British heat pump expert Abode Heat, is debunking four of the most common myths about heat pumps, in order to share accurate information on these renewable energy sources. And with the government grant within the Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS) increasing from £5,000 to £7,500 this month (October) – alongside broader net zero and green energy conversations – more of us will be aware of heat pumps than ever.


Ben Hodges, Director at Abode Heat comments: “Heat pumps – as a relatively new technology – are shrouded by myths and misconceptions. As Britain grapples with its net zero goals and the government has made good headway in incentivising these greener energy solutions, we expect heat pump popularity will increase as homeowners begin to realise more of the benefits and truths about air source and ground heat pumps.

“For the first year of the BUS, adoption was considerably low. Since the scheme opened on 23 May 2022, there were just 18,433 voucher applications for heat pumps in the first year, according to our study of the data1. This means that the scheme was only 53.5% on target, with just half (16,052) vouchers issued, of the government’s intended 30,000. However, now the grant has increased by £2,500, this will make heat pumps a slightly more accessible solution for homeowners in the UK. If we can work to educate on their benefits and debunk myths around them too, more long-term benefits will be clear and realised.”


Myth 1 – “heat pumps too expensive to install”

Perhaps the most common of all misconceptions about heat pumps is that they are too expensive. And whilst the initial outlay for a heat pump is in the region of £15,000 – £20,000 for an existing homeowner, according to Abode Heat, around half of this cost can be subsidised by the government’s scheme. Ben explains: “As of October 2023, just over sixteen months since the scheme initially launched, the government has increased the grant from £5,000 to £7,500, meaning that homeowners can typically only expect to pay for half of the upfront cost of a heat pump.”

And property experts at CompareMyMove claim that the remaining heat pump installation cost can be made back nearly two-fold in the value it adds to a property, as renewables become increasingly attractive.


Dave Sayce, property expert and director at Compare My Move says: “According to studies, it is estimated that a heat pump can add around 7.1% value to a home if fitted correctly and in the right climate. The main selling point of a heat pump is its eco-friendly nature, using much less energy than a regular heating or A/C system and taking its heat from natural resources. Another big selling point, and money saver, is that you won’t need to buy both a heater and A/C unit as a heat pump does it all on one system.

“When looking at the average British house price, this 7.1% addition of value will be over £20,500. Not only does it add to the value of the home, but you will also see savings on your energy bill which could be anything from £500 to £1400 a year, depending on your energy consumption.”


Myth 2 – “there isn’t an available engineer to install one”

“An issue the UK faces compared to other European countries is the resources to install heat pumps; there is a significant lack of skilled engineers to install and manage them in this country. And this is highlighted that of the 18,433 BUS applications made in the scheme’s first year, only two thirds (63.5)% made it to the stage of being redeemed and paid1,” explains Ben.

Recent figures from Nesta2 suggest that the UK has around 3,000 heat pump engineers, with an expected 27,000 needed by 2028 to meet the government’s target. Abode Heat is just one of many firms to have adapted to shift a large proportion of its business to offering a MCS umbrella scheme to enable non-MCS accredited plumbers and heating engineers to use their expertise and accreditation to advise and install.

As this happens UK-wide, installer availability is beginning to increase to meet demand. At the same time, engineer-upskilling and opening more apprenticeships in the heat pump industry will make this shortage a myth of the past,” adds Ben.


Myth 3 – “heat pumps don’t work well on old properties”

 An estimated 10 million properties in England are hard-to-treat3, referring to properties with characteristics or construction features that present challenges when improving the energy efficiency of the property, or retrofitting modern technologies. There seems to be a common misconception that these older hard-to-treat properties are considered to be hard to heat, and unsuitable for low-carbon technologies like heat pumps. However, with careful consideration and accurate system design, heat pumps can provide a viable alternative heating solution for any property,” explains Ben.

Heat pumps not working on older properties is very much a myth, as evident in some of the work and projects that have been completed, such as this thatched boat house project in Cornwall, which won an award from property personality and Grand Designs presenter Kevin McCloud himself.

There is no one size fits all when it comes to heat pumps, and no buildings are off limits. Older properties instead require more planning and design consideration to ensure the whole building’s energy efficiency is performing and the right heat pump solution is in place.”


Myth 4 – “having one on the side of the house is noisy and it looks ugly”

When solar was first introduced, people said it was too ugly on a roof and would never take off; yet now 1.3 million UK homes have solar panels installed4. Heat pumps are in their infancy compared to solar, so Ben says “it will take time for us to get used to the sight of a small box on a home’s exterior for an air source heat pump. But the long-term environmental, efficiency and cost impacts far outweigh an external box on the property.”

A good quality air source heat pump is no louder than a normal external flue from a gas or oil burner,” explains Ben, who advises that “those concerned with the appearance and noise of a heat pump, ground source heat pumps would be a better solution as they avoid the issue of sound all together.”




[1] Boiler Upgrade Scheme monthly uptake statistics, Department for Energy Security and Net Zero, June 2023 –

[2] Installers shortage gap –

[3] Hard to treat homes –

[4] How many UK homes have solar –,generating%20electricity%20from%20solar%20panels.