Heat pumps are a more sustainable heat source for your home’s heating system compared to traditional gas-fed boilers and are ideal to use with floor heating. In this expert guide we’ll explore the energy-efficiency of heat pumps and discover which underfloor heating system is best to use with them. You’ll find out:
- The difference between ground and air-source heat pumps
- Why UFH is ideal for use with heat pumps
- Which system is best for installation with heat pumps
- Typical costs for heat pumps and floor heaters
- How our online quote tool is ideal for specifying heat pumps
How does a heat pump work?
Put simply, heat pumps draw renewable heat from either the air (in the case of air-source heat pumps) or the ground (for ground-source heat pumps) and converts this into energy that can heat your home and provide you with hot water. Air-source pumps absorb heat from the air outside your home and use electricity to warm its liquid refrigerant which acts as the heat source for your heating system. Ground-source heat pumps operate much like underfloor heating systems with pipes laid in the ground outside your home which circulates and heats water by absorbing natural geothermal energy from the earth.
They are a much more energy-efficient way to heat a home compared to traditional heating sources and work best with water-based heating systems, such as underfloor heating. If you’re thinking about improving the energy rating of your home, our range of water floor heaters are the ideal heating system to use in conjunction with a heat pump.
What are the benefits of using UFH with a heat pump?
As a cleaner, more sustainable heat source, heat pump systems can reduce the carbon footprint of your home and are considered the future of domestic heating as we look towards reducing global carbon emissions. Heat pumps operate at lower temperatures than an oil or gas boiler which means they work much more efficiently with radiant floor heating systems than standard radiators. Floor heaters are designed to run at these lower water temperatures whilst still producing the same level of warmth as radiators and this advanced technology means water underfloor heating systems use much less energy and offer lower running-costs than a central heating system.
Heat pumps also emit much more energy than they use so installing a heat pump alongside an energy saving UFH system can help save you significant money on your heating bills. In many cases, the cost of installing a heat pump and a water floor heating system can be offset in the long-term by the savings it will produce.
Is a ground-source or air-source heat pump better for me?
If you’re considering installing a water floor heating system (also known as a hydronic or wet heating system) throughout your home, then a heat pump is the ideal heat source to utilise. Air-source heat pumps are great for home renovation projects as they offer a relatively straightforward installation and take up little space. These pumps are fitted to the outside wall of your property and are around the same size as a typical boiler or air-conditioning unit.
Ground-source heat pumps are most commonly installed in new-build projects. Ground source heat pump installations can be labour intensive and time consuming; the subsurface pipes can be installed in the ground outside your home as either a horizontal ‘array’ – whereby the pipes are installed as a horizontal loop a few metres below your garden for instance – or a vertical array, where the pipe is installed vertically through a much deeper bore hole.
To make the most of the energy-efficiency of heat pumps, you should make sure the rest of your home is running at its most efficient too. Alongside a hydronic heating solution, having underfloor heating insulation installed throughout your home will help you conserve as much energy as possible, keeping the warmth inside your home and the cold air out.
Which floor heating system is best to use?
All our hydronic floor heating systems can be used with heat pumps. Most hydronic systems require a layer of concrete screed which the floor heating pipes are submerged into before fitting the final floor finish. For new-build projects or larger-scale renovation projects that may use a ground-source heat pump as the heat source, our Clyspo System is a popular hydronic option. The Clypso System has been designed for use with floating screeded floors and its high-quality insulation uses an innovative gridwork design for a clear installation.
If you are retrofitting a heater in your property with an air-source heat pump, then our Total-16 Low-Profile System is a great choice. With a system depth of just 16mm including inbuilt insulation, the Total-16 System does not require screeding and has been developed to have a negligible impact on floor levels – making it ideal for home refurbishment projects with fixed ceiling heights. It features aluminium heat spreading plates which evenly distributes heat across the floor’s surface and offers a quick installation.
How much will it cost to install a heat pump and UFH system?
Heat pumps can be expensive to purchase but their enhanced energy-saving performance means this initial cost can be outweighed by the cost-savings they offer – often hundreds of pounds a year off your energy bills. Prices can vary for heat pumps based on your energy needs and the specifications of your property. An air-source heat pump can cost between approximately £4,000 – £8,000 and a ground-source pump will cost more, somewhere between £12,000 – £18,000.
The cost of underfloor heating is also dependent on the size and scope of your project but you can expect to pay around £41.57/ M² + Vat for our Clyspo System plus installation. Installation costs for both heat pumps and UFH systems will also vary. Using our innovative underfloor heating online quotation tool will help you get precise prices for your system of choice.
It’s important to know that by installing a heat pump you may be entitled to receive grants from the UK Government through the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive scheme which aims to promote the use of renewable energy.
Using our online quote tool for easy planning
You can use our heat pump compatible quote tool to find the best hydronic heating system for your home and find out exactly how much it will cost. Simply fill in the details of your project and you can purchase the system online. This tool factors in a range of engineering variables based on your project requirements so you may want to ask your installer or architect to work with you to complete the quote.