How much does an air source heat pump cost?
Air source heat pumps are now supplied by an increasing number of manufacturers and come in a
variety of sizes, have different capabilities and are of variable quality. Therefore there is a wide range of
prices. A high quality, efficient replacement package for a traditional boiler system should be expected
to cost £2,200 to £4,000. As air source heat pumps become increasingly commoditised, it can be
expected that these figures will decrease.
How much will installation cost me?
Installation costs vary from property to property, but as a guide costs will be similar to that of a
conventional gas boiler. A competent installer should take 2-4 days to install and set up the Ecodan
system. For new build, as no gas supply is required, costs are actually cheaper.
Will I save money by fitting Ecodan?
From data provided by BRE testing (the UK's leading centre for independent advice for the built
environment) and from case study analysis running costs can be reduced over a conventional gas boiler
by approximately 35%. These saving are achieved using standard tariff electricity.
How can air source heat pumps alleviate fuel poverty?
Because of the energy conversion efficiencies within an air source heat pump, the running costs against
the other main gas, oil or direct electric heating systems are significantly reduced.
Is this a renewable energy system? Can I get a grant?
Ecodan has been approved by BRE Global under the MCS scheme. In order to qualify for grant funding
please be aware of the requirement to use a registered MCS installer.
The MCS underpins the Renewable Heat Premium Payment currently available to off-gas properties installing air source heat pumps at £850.00. A Renewable Heat Incentive payment is proposed for 2013. See DECC for further information
What is meant by 'clean grid' and why does this matter to air source heat pumps?
As the UK introduces more renewable electrical generating technologies (i.e. nuclear and wind) to meet
its 2020 renewable obligations, the amount of CO2 emitted for every kilowatt of energy produced will
reduce, which in turn will reduce the carbon emissions attributed to the air source heat pump operation,
making it even more favourable against other traditional heating systems.
Can I reduce my Carbon footprint by using Ecodan?
Carbon footprint is a measure of carbon emissions based on energy consumption per kWhr and fuel
type used i.e. direct electric/oil/lpg/gas or electric heat pump. The Ecodan can save approximately 45%
of the average yearly CO2 based on a gas fired boiler, and even more on coal, oil and direct electric.
How does Ecodan help reduce carbon emissions?
Because Ecodan's output efficiencies are in the seasonal order of 3 to 3.5 (i.e. 300% to 350%), the
actual amount of electrical energy consumed from the national grid is dramatically reduced. So even
taking in to account the reduced CO2/kW for gas (0.19) against CO2/kW for electricity (0.43) Ecodan
emits far less CO2 than even the highest efficiency condensing gas boiler.
Are air source heat pumps classed as a renewable technology?
Within the Climate Change and Sustainable Energy Act (Sources of Energy and Technologies), yes.
Here air source heat pumps are defined as a microgeneration technology.
What sort of properties are suitable for an air source heat pump?
Air source heat pumps are a suitable complete or partial solution for the majority of existing houses as
well as new builds. Most properties that can achieve a reasonable level of thermal insulation could be
suitable for an air source heat pump. In order to achieve the highest levels of efficiencies, all properties
should have been updated with the basic thermal improvements i.e. cavity wall installation, loft insulation
and double glazing. The air source heat pump then needs to be able to meet the maximum heat
demand of the property under its maximum (coldest) conditions.
Are there any particular parts of the UK housing market for which the air source heat pump is
Domestic heating oil and to a lesser extent bulk gas prices in the UK makes the installation of an air source heat pump commercially
compelling, even taking into account the premium you have to pay for this low-volume technology.
Another point worth considering is that significant numbers of those in fuel poverty live in off-gas grid
locations, hence their status, and the widespread adoption of this technology would significantly help in
this area. Also, because of the low carbon emissions nature of this technology, homes having to meet
higher levels of the Code for Sustainable Homes are also particularly well suited.
Can an air source heat pump be used in conjunction with other technologies?
Yes, with suitable control systems, air source heat pumps can be operated to act in either a lead or
support mode with any other fossil or renewable heating technology.
Are air source heat pumps included in ‘permitted planning development’?
As of Spring 2012 Air Source Heat Pumps have been included in permitted development rights. Conservation Areas, listed buildings and National Parks may have additional requirements which must be checked in advance.
Will Ecodan work in my home?
The heat loss of your home needs to be calculated to ensure that Ecodan will give sufficient space
heating. As a guide a modern house has a heat loss of approximately 50W/m2. So Ecodan would be
able to heat a home up to 180m2 (based on a 9kW output). Careful consideration with older buildings
needs to be taken, the heat loss of these homes can be much higher than in modern well insulated
How do I buy an Ecodan system?
Ecodan needs to be bought and installed by an Approved Ecodan Installer with the right qualifications.
Mitsubishi Electric can provide you with details of your nearest installer.
How much will installation cost me?
Installation costs vary from property to property, but as a guide, costs will be similar to that of a
conventional gas boiler. A competent installer should take 2 - 4 days to install and set up the Ecodan
system. For new build, as no gas supply is required, costs are actually cheaper.
How easy is it to install Ecodan?
Many house builders are installing Ecodan in new homes. If you have an older property, Ecodan is
straightforward to fit and an Approved Ecodan Installer will take 3 - 5 days to install and set it
up. Unless the property is over 30 years old, the existing radiators can potentially be used. Our specially
trained installers will give all the advice needed.
How much space do I need for the Ecodan outdoor unit?
Ecodan is approximately 950mm tall by 950mm wide and has a depth of 330mm. Sufficient ventilation
space is required at the front of the unit (1m) and at the back of the unit (300mm).
Will Ecodan work with my existing radiators?
New build properties will have the radiators correctly sized for Ecodan. For retrofit applications in newer
homes, existing radiators are likely to be of suitable size and performance to cope with the lower flow
temperatures provided from Ecodan. In older homes with older radiators this may not be the case. In all
installations Mitsubishi Electric would recommend checking design of all radiators. Before installing
Ecodan - additional or larger new radiators may be required.
Do I need low surface temperature radiators?
Low surface temperature radiators are not needed. These radiators work with conventional high
temperature systems and the low surface temperature is a safety feature to prevent burns.
What kind of protection do I need for my domestic hot water?
WRAS (Water Regulation Advisory Scheme) guidelines state that hot water needs to be stored above
60oC and distributed at no less than 55oC to prevent microbial growth (legionella). However, in
recommendations it states that hot water should be distributed less than 50oC to avoid risk of scolding.
Under G18.5 of the Water Regulations, terminal fittings or communal showers should be supplied
through thermostatic mixing valves so water temperatures do not exceed 43oC.
Ecodan has built in controls to perform the prevention of microbial growth (legionella) by weekly
boosting the water temperature to over 60oC to sanitise the system, therefore water can be stored at
lower temperatures for maximum efficiency.
Ecodan is a heat pump boiler, what is a heat pump?
A heat pump is a refrigerant based system, (like your refrigerator at home). The system can absorb low
grade heat from the air (air source), water (water source) or ground (ground source), and raise its
temperature efficiently to be suitable for space heating and/or hot water. Ecodan is an air source heat
pump system and can provide water temperature up to 60oC (without backup electric heater) in ambient
temperatures as low as -10oC.
How does an air source heat pump differ from a ground source heat pump?
Ground source heat pumps draw on the absorbed energy stored in the earth whereas air source heat
pump collects thermal energy within the air which is renewed daily by the sun.
Can an air source heat pump provide all the necessary heat & hot water for a house?
Yes, you just need to ensure that the air source heat pump is sized to meet the maximum heat load
conditions for the property. Also to meet a varying space heating load we would recommend that only a
variable output air source heat pump be considered.
Heat pumps are noisy aren't they?
Some heat pumps make more noise than others. Older technology such as those with fixed speed
compressors are relatively noisy compared to the new generation of inverter driven heat pumps. Ecodan
is market leading and has a noise rating of 49dBA at 1m at full capacity which is very quiet. Many other
heat pumps have a noise level of 3dBA more than Ecodan, this may not sound much but as sound is
measured on a logarithmic scale 3dBA is double the noise level.
What difference will the homeowner experience if they use Ecodan instead of a traditional
You will experience a gentler more consistent heat within the room. Not like the pulses of high
temperature we currently experience having oversized radiators and boilers. The central and radiator
controls work in exactly the same way.
Will Ecodan work when it's cold outside?
Yes, Ecodan works at temperatures as low as -20ºC, which is highly unlikely in the UK. The Ecodan
system is designed to operate at the optimum efficiency level at any time of year. Its technology will
automatically regulate the system so that it never uses more energy than needed at any given time,
making it one of the most energy efficient ways to heat a home and provide hot water.
Will the home still be warm enough?
Traditional radiators work with on-off bursts of heat to maintain the desired room temperature. Ecodan is
different because it supplies water to the radiators at a lower, but constant temperature. The
temperature of a home can still be set using a normal thermostat, but the heating will be constant and
more controlled - which also costs less money.
Will the water still be warm enough?
There is no noticeable difference in the supply of hot water - Ecodan can supply water up to 60ºC.
Can the system provide cooling?
Although Ecodan is a reverse cycle heat pump the current package is not designed for cooling
applications. Refrigerant based fan coils can not be attached to the system as all the refrigerant is
contained in a sealed system similar to the set up found in a fridge.
What temperature should I supply my heating and hot water at?
Efficiency of Ecodan increases the lower the water temperature and the higher the ambient
temperature. Typically, Ecodan supplies water to radiators at 45oC and underfloor heating systems at
35oC. Further increases in efficiency are achieved by varying the water temperature in relation to the
ambient air temperature. For sanitary hot water Ecodan supplies water at 53oC. Ecodan is unique as it
allows you to set different water temperatures for heating and sanitary hot water.
Ecodan is inverter driven, what does this mean?
Ecodan has an inverter driven compressor, this means the system will accurately match the heating
load by ramping up or down in small steps as required, with reduced stop/start and no power surges
which are found in non inverter driven systems. The benefits are a very low start up current of 5amps
and low running currents..
How has air source heat pump technology changed recently?
Air source heat pump technology directly benefits from developments within the air conditioning (air to
air) industry. Efficiencies within air to air have dramatically (3 fold) improved within the last six / eight
Are air source heat pumps new and where have they been used already?
Air source heat pumps have been used as a heating technology for over twenty-five years. Within Sweden
98% of all new build properties are fitted with heat pumps, either ground source or air source.
Other energy efficient technologies have promised to be a significant 'solution' but have failed to
deliver - why should air source heat pumps be any different?
Firstly, air source heat pump technology is not new, it's been around for many years, is well understood
and we only need look towards the Scandinavian countries to see it can be adopted on a large scale
and work in significantly harsher conditions than we experience within the UK. Secondly, we already
have a trained skilled plumbing work force who, with the minimum amount of additional training, have all
the skill sets to design, apply, install and maintain this technology. Thirdly, the manufacturing capability
already exists to up scale very quickly to meet any potential increase in demand.
Where will Ecodan units be made?
Mitsubishi Electric have located the production of the Ecodan air source heat pump to their factory at Livingston, Scotland.
What are the maintenance processes and costs associated with Ecodan?
The packaged Ecodan comes as a factory sealed unit (similar to the domestic fridge) and hence
requires very little long term attention. We suggest that there is a yearly clean up of any build up of
leaves or debris from behind the unit and that the coil is washed annually.
How long is the warranty?
Ecodan has a three year warranty provided it is installed, commissioned and maintained by an
Approved Ecodan Installer.
Does Ecodan require an annual service by a refrigeration engineer?
Ecodan does not need an annual service by a refrigeration engineer. However an annual service by an
Approved Ecodan Installer to carry out a visual inspection, ensure that the heat exchanger is clean and
the power terminal blocks are tight every 12 months is required.
What happens at the end of life of the system - do I have to pay for disposal of Ecodan?
Since the Ecodan refrigerant circuit is a sealed system it can be treated in the same way as a fridge and
would be accepted by local authority for refrigerant removal and disposal. Currently there are no costs
are associated with this.