Heat pumps: how to make the most of the Renewable Heat Incentive Scheme

With current government grants for installing renewable heat pumps coming to an end, now is the time to act

Promotional Feature By Andrew Emery | 1 May 2021

With generous government incentives for installing renewable heat sources at homes set to end in 2022, we look at why the time is right for eco-friendly heat pumps…

new build home with solar panels garden and fence

Image: IMS Heat Pumps

Incentives coming to an end

The government has set ambitious renewable energy targets, and two incentives for homeowners to act have been the RHI and GHG – the domestic Renewable Heat Incentive and the Green Homes Grant. However, the latter closed in March of 2021, and the former is also set to come to an end in March 2022. As yet, the government has yet to outline any new commitments after that.

The RHI has been a generous support scheme for homeowners to install either ground source or air source heat pumps, both of which are fabulous and efficient ways to tap into renewable heat sources.

room with ground source heat pumps installed

Image: IMS Heat Pumps

How to heat pumps work?

A ground source heat pump draws the sun’s heat directly from the ground, with boreholes drilled down and pipes installed to tap into the underground heat and use it for heating your home.

By contrast, an air source heat pumps sucks in air from outside and heats it for the inside of your home through compression. It’s able to draw heat even during freezing weather. It may be that you don’t even need a gas connection to your home – good news with the connection of gas boilers to new build homes being outlawed from 2025.Both involve different installations, and therefore attract different government grants. The RHI provides post-installation support for ground source pumps of up to £35K, £11,200 for air source pumps.

Emma Bohan, General Manager of IMS Heat Pumps, thinks it’s a benefit that those building or renovating their own home should seriously consider: “The RHI scheme provides excellent financial support for installing heat pumps, especially if you’re considering ground source, and is available for self-builders. With this scheduled to end in March 2022, now is the perfect time to install.”