Air Source Heat Pumps vs. Gas Boilers

In one corner, air source heat pumps are the new emergent technology for the renewable market, and they almost rival solar energy in terms of efficiency and domestic accessibility. In the other corner, the longstanding gas boiler: they’ve long been a domestic mainstay, and you’ll likely have had one for years.

But, in 2018 and beyond, which is better? Not just in terms of what saves you money (although this is an important factor), but also in terms of efficiency and environmental impact. Because, that’s the ultimate goal, right? To do our bit to help reduce the damage we cause to our environment.

Hopefully, with the below information, you’ll see just what little gas boilers do to help.

Running costs

Given the volatile and often oscillating nature of traditional energy prices, you can expect a far smoother process with an air source heat pump. Not only are they cheaper to run (cheaper than both natural gas and oil put together, in fact), but they also require minimal maintenance. All you need to do is arrange an annual servicing, which we can help with. Aside from that, just clear away the odd leaf here and there!


    Verdict: 1-0 to Air source heat pumps


We spoke a little about maintenance in the last section, but we feel that it deserves its own section here. Besides the annual servicing, an air source heat pump is a perfect example of ‘fit-and-forget’ technology. You can quite literally leave a heat pump to it and, because ours are guaranteed to last for more than 20 years, you can rest safe in the knowledge that you’re covered.

When a boiler breaks down, on the other hand, it can feel like the end of the world as you know it. What’s more, it’s strongly advised that gas boilers have maintenance checks made by certified HVAC professionals – and more than once per year. Remember that these are checks to carbon-monoxide poisoning, which you certainly won’t have to worry about with an air source heat pump.


    Verdict: 2-0 to Air source heat pumps 2

Environmental health

Air source technology is the clear winner here. Plus, it’s not only good for the environment but it’s also efficient – just as efficient as any carbon-emitting source. An air source heat pump emits heat at a lower temperature than a boiler but over a much longer period, giving your home a stable and healthy supply of warmth.

For each unit of energy that an air source heat pump uses, it produces three times that in terms of warmth – enough said, really. This is called CoP (coefficient of performance), and of all the renewable energy sources, heat pumps are up there with the best CoP ratings.


    Verdict: 3-0 to Air source heat pumps

Space requirements

An air source heat pump takes up around the size of a washing machine, and is placed outside, connected to your existing pipework. This is a close one, and we’re afraid that the gas boiler wins here.

Many modern boiler systems take away the need for a hot-water cylinder all together, as they heat water straight from the mains. In terms of space, they can be tucked away in a cupboard space quite inconspicuously, whereas a heat pump is a little more noticeable.

That said, an air source heat pump goes outside of your house, so it doesn’t take up any space indoors.

Nonetheless, we’ll let gas boilers have this one!


    Verdict: Gas boilers pull one back to make it 3-1 to air source heat pumps

Ease of use

This is also a close one, given that heat pumps and gas boilers are both fully automated, making the whole user experience a fairly smooth ride whichever one you’re using. That said, you have unlimited customisation options with an air source heat pump. From a simple remote or handset to a fully optimised app with vast functionality, you can run it how you want to.

Boilers, on the other hand, often come with a dizzying amount of controls, when all you really want is simplicity. So, it’s a close one, but we think air source technology pips it here.


    Verdict: Air source heat pumps

Give us a call

Air source is the way to go! There are so many benefits to be had from a heat pump installation. One thing to remember is that you can use a heat pump alongside your existing heat sources, whether you have radiators or even an underfloor heating system.

Of course, you could choose to go totally carbon-neutral (which you can do with a heat pump!). One of the biggest strengths of heat pump technology is its incredible versatility.

We’re happy to talk through your options – give us a call on 0333 733 1703, or alternatively fill in our quick enquiry form.

Nov 30 2018