Electrification of Heat – 1930s semi-detached house hybrid-heat pump installation

Carole and Kelvin live in a 1930s three-bedroom semi-detached house in urban Newcastle, England.

With their aging combi-gas boiler Carole frequently breaking down, Carole and Kevin knew that, due to its age, spare parts would soon be less easy to find. In addition, they found that the warmth and comfort in the house was inadequate. As they are both environmentally aware, Carole and Kelvin were pleased to install a heating system which would provide a more environmentally responsible solution for the long term.

The Electrification of Heat (EoH) demonstration project, funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), is seeking to better understand the technical and practical feasibility of a large-scale rollout of heat pumps into existing British homes.

The Challenge

The recruitment and installation phase of the EoH project ran from July 2020 through to October 2021, and despite the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic, 742 heat pumps were installed into a broad spectrum of housing types and socio-economic groups, that reflects a representative sample of households across Great Britain.

The range of different heat pumps installed, included:

  • Low-temperature and high-temperature air source heat pumps
  • Ground source heat pumps
  • Hybrid heat pumps incorporated with a gas boiler
  • Some additional technologies, such as heat batteries were incorporated.

Householders were asked to reflect on their first hand experiences of taking part in the programme, including disruption during the installation work, thoughts on the noise and aesthetics of the technology and the outcomes for warmth and comfort.

The Solution

After carrying out a full survey of the property, the installers suggested a hybrid heat pump system
was installed at Carole and Kelvin’s house. This uses an air source heat pump, which runs on electricity, paired with a gas boiler for the provision of hot water and as a back up heating source.

The Outcome

The installation of the hybrid-heat pump system took over 5 days, longer than the 1–2 days for a typical heat pump installation, because this involved connecting both a low temperature heat pump and moving the new gas boiler from a bedroom to the bathroom.

Carole and Kelvin used to have cold spots in their house. During the first few months after its  installation, the heat pump showed that it can meet all of the couple’s heating requirements even
on the coldest days. This was due to the installers’ careful examination of each individual room during the pre-installation process to make sure that every room would be heated to the desired temperature with new individually controlled radiators in each room.

Read the Full Case Study

Carole and Kelvin, hybrid-heat pump installation into a semi-detached house in Newcastle, England.

Electrification of Heat Demonstration project

Reports, statistics and case studies helping to overcome barriers to deployment and demonstrating the feasibility of a large-scale roll-out of heat pumps.

Find out more

Want to know more?

Find out more about how Energy Systems Catapult can help you and your teams