Exciting news for those thinking about an ASHP!

Heatology ASHP Devon RHI

The eagerly awaited document outlining the changes to the RHI has now been published by the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (see full document here)  and From an air source heat pump point of view there are two changes, the first is that the RHI payment is going up from 7.51p/kWhr to 10.05p/kWhr.  The new tariff will only apply to units installed after today, the rest of us are on the old rate. The new rate will come into play in Spring. (Spring is not yet defined). The second change is that EVERY heat pump installed, which qualifies for RHI, will need its own electricity meter measuring the indoor unit and any electrical heaters installed, including immersion heaters. So we at Heatology will now include an electricity meter eligible for this with every quote. 

However, there will be limitations to the amount of support given: 

"Heat demand limits will be introduced, to limit the level of annual heat demand in respect of which any household can receive support. The heat demand limits will be set at 20,000kWh for ASHPs, 25,000kWh for biomass boilers and stoves and 30,000kWh for GSHPs.However, this will not disqualify properties with higher heat demands from applying to the scheme.There will be no heat demand limit for solar thermal."

Couple this with the rising prices of fuel, this is a good time to invest in a ASHP!

Heatology ASHP Oil Price Chart





Switching to ASHP's in Devon Now:

The RHI are due to announce some changes in the spring of 2017 - so it may be a good idea to take advantage of the RHI before changes are introduced.

Under the RHI scheme generous incentives are available to both domestic and commercial installations for switching to green energy heating systems. They’re paid a set tariff per kilowatt hour of energy required and it is designed to neutralise the cost of switching. Domestic RHI is paid over a period of seven years at a higher rate and commercial RHI is paid over 20 years at a lower rate.

The domestic RHI scheme currently covers ground source and air source heat pumps, biomass boilers and solar thermal panels, but this is part of what is set to change. The next tariff announcement will be made tomorrow: On the 1st December to come into effect on 1st January 2017. The faster the uptake of a specific technology, the quicker the tariff falls, which is why the biomass tariff fallen from a generous 12.2p/kW hour to today’s meagre level of just 4.68p/kW hour.

In reality, many people actually see a decent return on their original outlay. With interest rates low at the moment, it looks an even more of an attractive prospect. When the reforms are announced next year we expect to see domestic RHI payments capped. This will stop people in larger properties taking too much of the RHI kitty as they did with Biomass.

It’s already been announced that support for solar thermal will be withdrawn altogether in April, so anyone wanting to capitalise on RHI payments for this technology need to get going.

We remain relatively optimistic that a special rate will continue for some time into the future. Brexit will ultimately remove control from the EU, so we will be able to control our own VAT once again.

It is estimated that we in the UK will need to instal in the region of 6.8 million ashp's by 2030 to hit our targets and so encouraging people to move to renewable energy heating systems on this scale will require an education programme of sorts, which really hasn’t been the case so far. 

While we can’t be sure what the reforms will bring in the spring, or what future incentives might look like post-Brexit and post-RHI, we can remain confident that there will be ongoing support for ashp's and renewables. Just how generous this will be is uncertain for the moment, so, for anyone considering a renewable energy heating system, there are some clear benefits to switching to them now.

We'll keep you posted.



Stages of Topsham Pool Solar Thermal Installation:
 The frames needed to be manually adjusted for the approved angle of the roof and for optimum sun energy absorption.
   3 down, only 15 more to go!
 Frames all up on the roof, ready for the panels.
 Panels safley up, so far so good!

We have now fully piped up the Solar Thermal system and we are ready to fill them and test for soundness. Still some minor works to do on the roof such as wiring and small areas of pipe insulation, but all on course!



Heatology Devon Air Source Heat Pump Care

Norm Says:

Exterior Maintenance Of Your Air Source Heat Pump Is Important During The Autumn and Winter Months:
  • If necessary, the outer casing can be cleaned with a damp cloth
  • Make regular checks to ensure the grills are not blocked with leaves or snow
  • Some Air Source Heat Pumps can discharge around 50 litres of condensate water so it is important to ensure it can discharge safely to a gutter or soak-a-way
  • For colder locations, We can supply a heated condensate hose


Topsham Pool Renewables with Heatology: Solar Thermal Heating
Heatology and Topsham Pool

Topsham pool have received a grant of £25,000 from the Coastal Recycling Community Fund.

The grant will go a long way towards funding a new roof and solar heating, and boosts our campaign to raise £100,000 for much needed renovations.

Topsham Pool Secretary, Andrea Veale, said: ‘We’re delighted and extremely grateful to the team at Coastal Recycling. Their grant will enable us to install renewable energy in the form of modern solar panels. We’ll be able to reduce our gas heating bills, which will make the pool more sustainable both environmentally and financially. Thank you Coastal!

The £25,000 brings the fundraising total - which has recently benefitted from a grant from local Councillor Andrew Leadbetter of £5000 and over £1000 in donations from local residents - to more than £31,000.

Topsham Community Pool is one of seven local charities to benefit in this round of funding from the Coastal Recycling Community Fund, which is Coastal Recycling’s ongoing initiative to enhance community spaces, cultural facilities and places for outdoor recreation.



ASHP RHI Payments Are Set To Increase

The Chancellor's November Consumer Spending Review May be of interest to those thinking ahead about an Air Source Heat Pump in Devon.

The Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) funding will increase to £1.15 billion in 2020-21 in order to further our climate goals.

The RHI budget in year 2016-17 will increase to £640 million, a 49% increase on the scheme expenditure in 2015-16.

It is currently unclear as to what other RHI reforms will entail, including any impacts on specific technologies or tariffs. It is expected that the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) will publish this information in due course.  

This is fantastic news for the Air Source Heat Pump industry in Devon and surrounding areas, and of course Heatology and their future customers. Keep your eye on the RHI payments as we suspect they will be going up shortly.

If you would like to learn more about what heat pumps and the RHI could mean for you, simply click the button below to receive a free estimate.



Devon: Air Source Heat Pump Facts From The Energy Savings Trust

Is an Air Surce Heat Pump suitable for my property and budget in Devon or the South West?

Here are a few key questions you may want to consider:

Location: Do you have somewhere to put it? You'll need a place outside your home where a unit can be fitted to a wall or placed on the ground (on a plinth). It will need plenty of space around it to get a good flow of air. A sunny wall is perfect..

Is your home well insulated? Air source heat pumps work best when producing heat at a lower temperature than traditional boilers, it's essential that your home is insulated and draught-proofed well for the heating system to be effective. Perfect for the Devon climate.

What fuel will you be replacing? The system will pay for itself much more quickly if it's replacing an electricity or coal heating system.

What heating system will you use? Air source heat pumps can perform better with underfloor heating systems or warm air heating than with radiator-based systems because of the lower water temperatures required.

Is the system intended for a new development? Combining the installation with other building work will reduce the cost of installing the ASHP.

This comprehensive guide from the Energy Savings Trust will walk you through the decision making process with regards to Air Source Heat Pumps and whether they will work for you. Are you considering installing an ASHP to future proof yourself against future oil prices which will increase over time (see above), or are you looking towards a cleaner greener and cheaper alternative to buring fossil fuels; have a look here.




Oil Prices Are Set To Rise: Heat Pumps Are The Future

Are you still burning fossile fuels, perhaps enjoying the low prices of oil? Maybe now is the time to consider a green alternative to buring oil for your home heating. Air Source Heat Pumps will future-proof your home and reward you with and RHI fanancial incentive. Give our Devon office a call today on 01392 464430

Report by Liam Halligan

"Unless global markets crash, I say that year of $60-plus oil will be 2017"

Had the world economy not endured the 2008 financial crisis, and subsequent stop-start recovery, oil consumption would have grown even more. But still, for all the expansion of wind and solar, and endless hype about a “post-petroleum world”, oil consumption continues to rise relentlessly – and that won’t change any time soon.




Cornwall and Devon have come out on top for Solar:

A renewable energy league table shows us that Cornwall is leading and Devon is a close second in a league table of the most solar panels installed across England and Wales.

But renewable campaigners are asking for assurances from the Government to make sure that renbewable energy has a productive future.

The Cornwall Council Future Economy Programme said: "It is great to see Cornwall performing so strongly on a national level. While we are pleased that Cornwall has been recognised for its uptake of solar, we recognise that locally and nationally a lot remains to be done to de-carbonise our energy sources.

"Here in Cornwall, we are also very focussed on localising the benefits of renewable energy wherever possible. We are confident that local residents will soon start to see differences in electricity prices and have the chance to take ownership of these clean sources of generation."

The league table is published just after Plymouth's largest solar array went online.

Constructed on a former landfill site in Ernesettle, energy generated from the 4.1MW solar array will be sold to the grid, and surplus income will be used to fund the activities of Plymouth Energy Community and the Four Greens Community Trust.

These technologies are becoming mainstream, generating a quarter of the UK's power in 2015.

And renewable energy is popular with people in the UK according to official government statistics which show 78% of the public support the use of renewables, with only 4% against.

Sonia Dunlop, spokesman for the Solar Trade Association, said that the rest of the UK should really up with Devon and Cornwall.

She said: "There is no doubt that the UK's solar transformation started in the South West. But solar PV works well all over the UK, and deployment is now picking up all over the country. However we are at risk of stopping Britain's solar revolution in its tracks, due to the government's decisions to cut back or close the entire subsidy framework. We need to get behind our industry and invest in a market that will soon be worth trillions worldwide."



Thermodynamics RHI - No Sign Yet

Thermodynamic panels have now been approved by the Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) for some time now. This means that those installing this technology can be confident that the systems are officially approved for use throughout the UK and meets the all appropriate standards, it doesn't mean that they will be able to recieve the renewable heat incentive as yet.

The  DECC have said : “We are aware of the standards, but there are still no plans to include these [thermodynamic panels] in the RHI.”

Thermodynamic panels come under the classification of solar assisted heat pumpsand they will be listed under this cataory on the MCS website.

The requirements for solar assisted heat pumps are all covered within the MCS heat pump standard (MIS 3005). Installers and products will need to be MCS certified according to these new requirements and existing installers will need to apply for an additional extension to their MCS installation capability. Make sure you check on the MCS website before agreeing to an installation as both equipment and installer have to be accredited.



Renewables uptake varies significantly across the country:

Renewable power is providing 19% of England’s electrical energy consumption according to a new publication “Renewable energy: A local progress report for England”.

Renewable experts Regen SW said that this is the most detailed analysis of the progress of renewable energy iaccross the country.

We generate 54,962 GWh of renewable energy from 736,998 renewable energy projects. This is still a long way below our targets, with slow progress in renewable heat meaning that just 5% of our total energy consumption in England is met by renewable energy. Government policies have now led to an even slower progress this year with a poor outlook forecast ahead.

Factors such as the amount of sun and wind, electricity grid infrastructure and public support play a key role in renewable energy deployment. East Riding of Yorkshire leads on the amount of onshore wind due to favourable resource and planning. Peterborough and Mid-Devon have over 10% of houses with solar PV installations as a result of social housing programmes, an engaged population, active community energy groups and trusted local installers. London is bottom of the table with only 3% of its electricity from renewables.

Merlin Hyman, Chief Executive of Regen SW has said: “This decade has seen remarkable growth in renewable energy in England. This is a public policy success story – a combination of public and private investment has led to innovation and technological progress, new industries and rapidly falling costs.

“The recent Government policy changes are taking the UK out of the global fast lane of renewables and the impact can already be seen on the ground. However, the global shift to a smart, decentralised and renewable energy system is now unstoppable and the leading areas of England are showing how this shift can be turned into an opportunity for businesses and local communities.

“The uneven take up of renewables across England demonstrates that a transformation in our energy system is not just about decisions in Whitehall and corporate boardrooms. Renewable energy projects happen in a place and depend on an enabling local environment and the engagement of local communities”



Comprehensive Cross Party Support for Renewed RHI budget from 2016

While climate change does not recieve primary billing in election campaigns, all parties present seem to be keen support climate change initiatives and all the candidates said they would lobby for a renewal of the Renewable Heat Incentive budget post 2016.  

Fantastic news for anyone thinking of installing an ASHP or GSHP in 2016

Who can apply for RHI?

Owners/Occupiers, self-builders, private landlords, registered providers of Social Housing who have installed an eligible technology can all apply for RHI support (provided they meet eligibility criteria).

Single domestic dwellings are covered.

RHI support is not available to new build properties (other than self-build projects).

Heatology are Devon's Commercial Hot Water and Air Source Heat Pump Experts