Heat Pump, 3 types available

How does a heat pump work?

A heat pump extracts heat from the air, soil or water using electricity. This heat can be used to heat your home or business premises and, if you wish, for tap water as well. This reduces your gas bill but your electricity bill will of course increase. In fact, a heat pump works like a refrigerator in reverse.

Update March 2022:

Due to the sharp increase in energy prices, there is currently a run on heat pumps, among other things. Whereas in 2021 these could be delivered without any problems, now you have to wait half a year. This is not only due to a lack of qualified personnel, but also to a lack of materials. Especially the chips for the control systems are hard to get.

Due to the sharp increase in gas prices, a heat pump now quickly pays for itself. Also because many people do not begrudge the Russians the profits from the gas revenues due to the war in the Ukraine. If gas prices stabilize at current levels, the payback period for heat pumps will be 3 times shorter than based on the calculations currently on this site.

Since we do not yet have a good idea of the price level at which gas prices will stabilize, the calculation values on this site have not yet been adjusted.

What types of heat pumps exist?

Hybrid heat pump

We know different types of heat pumps. The hybrid heat pump is mainly used in moderately insulated houses and works in conjunction with your HR central heating boiler. Moderately insulated still means that the roof, floor and also the walls must be insulated. Double glazing is also required. As with the solar boiler, the high efficiency boiler is used for supplementary heating of the house on cold days. The high performance boiler also heats the tap water for the shower and kitchen.

Hybrid pumps reduce CO2 emissions by 25% and lower energy costs. A hybrid heat pump can work with your current radiators but the pump works more efficiently if you use so-called low temperature heating such as underfloor heating or special radiators.

The disadvantage of the hybrid pump can be that its outdoor unit with its fan can make a lot of noise during the heating season. So first of all, pay attention to a fan that makes little noise and secondly. Put the thing in a place where your neighbors and yourself can still sleep well. On these hybrid heat pumps you get in 2022 a subsidy, € 1,950 to € 3.000 for the most economical unit.

Oh yes, apply for this subsidy within 12 months after installation. In addition, it is not possible to get a subsidy if you install the pump yourself. This must be done by a company. You must also submit an invoice in your name and proof of payment.

Ventilation pump

A ventilation heat pump only works in a house or building that is mechanically ventilated. This pump extracts the heat from the ventilation air and can certainly contribute to energy and CO2 savings. However, the capacity of the thing is limited and rarely large enough to heat the whole house with.

The system extracts warm air from the house to the outside, and fresh outside air comes in through grilles and windows. A ventilation heat pump extracts heat from the extracted warm air and uses it to heat the house. The amount of heat that such a heat pump provides is limited by the amount of air that needs to be changed.

Because of this, a ventilation heat pump usually works in conjunction with your central heating boiler. This is why it is called a hybrid system, similar to the hybrid heat pump. The ventilation heat pump replaces your fan that exhausts air to the outside.

The subsidy amount for this type of pump starts at € 1,350 for a 3kW version and rises to € 1,650 for the 7 kW variant.

View information about the heat pump boiler here.

Full heat pump

A complete heat pump completely replaces your high efficiency boiler and provides both heating for the whole house and tap water for showers and kitchens. But this requires a house or business premises that is very well insulated. Ordinary double glazing is no longer sufficient. HR++ or HR+++ is necessary. Most houses from 1992 onwards meet this standard, or of course older houses that were extra insulated afterwards.

Ordinary radiators are usually not sufficient here. The advice is to keep the temperature at a constant level as much as possible because heating up is relatively slow. Where a high performance gas boiler is normally set to 60 – 80 degrees, a heat pump works at a temperature of about 35 to 55 degrees.

If you work with these relatively low temperatures, it works best with floor or wall heating or with LTV radiators. They also work at this temperature.

50 degree test

Using this pump requires a lot of insulation. Would you like to know whether your current insulation is sufficient to heat the house with a heat pump? Then do the 50 degrees test. How does it work?

  1. Lower the boiler temperature to 50.
  2. Do this test on a chilly day with a daytime temperature between 4 and 10 degrees.
  3. Test during one week whether the house remains comfortably warm. If this is the case, your home is suitable for a heat pump.
  4. If the house does not get comfortably warm, the following options are still possible to make the house suitable:

Usually the original radiators of the house are too large and may therefore work at lower temperatures. Alternative is a climate booster, a fan on or under the radiator that ensures that the radiator gives off heat faster.

Water side adjustment

What you should do in any case is adjust the heating system on the water side. This ensures that the heat from the boiler is properly distributed across all radiators in the house. If this is not done or done wrongly, the radiators close to the boiler will become hot and the radiators further away from the boiler will remain cold.

To get these rooms warm most people turn up the central thermostat. Of course this costs a lot of money. Water side adjustment of the installation prevents this. Water side adjustment usually costs between € 300,- and € 500,- . These costs you earn back in 2,5 years with the current gas prices. Proper adjustment also saves between 5 and 15% gas per year.

Self-adjustment?

It seems that handy harriers can also do the water side adjustment themselves because a lot of time goes into adjusting the radiators. Since you also need special thermometers for that, I don’t see me doing it myself yet :). On the site of the Consumers’ Association you will find more information about this.

You also get the SEEH subsidy if you let your installer adjust your heating water wise in combination with 2 isolation measures. You won’t get rich from that € 90,- but if you want to insulate anyway you can just take it along.

The complete heat pump also needs a man-sized boiler tank for the hot water. This pump also requires an outdoor unit that can make noise. The full electric heat pump is a lot more expensive than the ones mentioned above, not counting the modifications to the rest of the heating system. The subsidy is therefore somewhat more generous and also increased in 2022, starting at € 1,950 for a 3kW version rising to € 3,750 for the 12 kW version.

The complete heat pump has two variants. The pump that extracts heat from the outside air and the ground pump that extracts heat from the ground. However, this requires an investment in a pipe system that takes the heat from 50 to 150 meters under the ground. It is more energy efficient than the air version, but for the same price you can buy an entry level middle class new car.

The subsidy on the ground heat pump in 2022 is an amount of € 3,750 for a 4 kW heat pump rising to € 5,100 for a 16 kW heat pump. A fully electric heat pump saves 45% CO2 and a ground pump emits 55% less CO2 compared to a high efficiency gas fired boiler.

In practice, a ground source pump is only cost-effective in commercial buildings with large floor areas, such as schools, business premises or large stores. For houses, a collection of houses such as an apartment complex is the solution so that they can all be connected to one pump. The most current subsidy amounts can be found on the website of RVO.

It also requires an outdoor unit that can make noise. This heat pump is a lot more expensive than the ones mentioned above, not counting the modifications to the rest of the heating system. The subsidy is also somewhat more generous, starting at € 1,300 and rising to € 3,400.

Subsidy for heat pump Netherlands

The ISDE (investment subsidy for sustainable energy) is a subsidy you can receive for the purchase of a heat pump in the Netherlands. This subsidy is intended to significantly reduce the gas consumption of households and businesses. Extra topical in this Ukraine crisis. The amount of subsidy depends on the capacity and performance of the pump but can amount to about 40% of the purchase cost.

A heat pump qualifies for the ISDE if it meets the following conditions:

  • The pump is an integrated part of a heating system.
  • The heating appliance is equipped with one of the following types: air-water, ground-water or a water-water pump. An air-to-air pump is not permitted.
  • The space heating appliance has a capacity of no more than 70 kW.
  • The heating appliance has an original label and technical documentation.
  • The heat pump is installed by an expert installer. You may not install it yourself for the subsidy. Remember that you must provide an original invoice and proof of payment to obtain this subsidy.

heat pump

And now all directly on the heat pump?

That is just the question. As shown above, before anything else a good or very good insulation of the house is needed. And that investment comes before an investment in a heat pump. The initial investment will then be earned back and the extra comfort you will experience will be added to it. Moreover, the price of heat pumps is expected to drop considerably in the coming years because they will be produced in larger quantities.

Now that gas prices have risen sharply, the payback period for a heat pump is favourable. Depending on whether you choose the hybrid model or the full electric model, payback periods of 5 to 7 years are possible, whereas before it was between 12 and 20 years. Due to current gas prices, the payback period is now three times lower than indicated on this website!

Experts expect a price drop of 30% in the next 10 years. Don’t forget that at current pricing, it takes you about 12 to 20 years to earn back a heat pump, depending on whether you choose the hybrid model or the full model. I also expect the noise level of the new heat pumps to be lower now that more attention is being paid to this. The major boiler manufacturers are also now seeing that the game is up.

Remeha acquired Techneco in early 2019 to become the market leader in heat pumps. The growth will initially come mainly from new homes that are no longer connected to the gas grid. Starting with insulation may also be the best decision right now for that reason.

Do you want to start with a heat pump? Then consider the hybrid model together with your existing central heating boiler. When 12 years have passed, you will have earned that one back by now, and if both need replacing, you can opt for the latest full-size heat pump.

More information, including tailored advice on whether your home is suitable for a heat pump, can be found on the website of Milieucentraal.