5 ways to heat your house without an oil or gas boiler

Gas or oil-fired boilers are currently the two most popular methods of heating homes in the UK. But with the public more and more determined to move away from fossil fuels – and with the government set to ban gas boilers in new builds from 2025 – a variety of new options are becoming viable.

Whether you’re developing a new property or looking to change the heating system in your home for a cheaper and more efficient option, you should consider which heating system is right for you and your property.
  1. Air source heat pumps

A popular low-carbon option among developers recently, an air source heat pump uses the outside air as a heat source when in heating mode or as a heat sink when in cooling mode. However, they have problems in the winter – when temperatures drop below zero, the pump’s compressor has to work harder to heat the incoming air.
  1. Ground source heat pumps

An efficient but expensive option, ground source heat pumps are more cost-effective to run and maintain than many other forms of heating. The pump transfers solar energy stored in the ground to your heating system. Although people can be put off by the idea of digging up of the garden during the installation process, this is much less of an issue when building a new property and will be cheaper and more energy-efficient in the long run. This method is also well suited to properties located away from the national grid.
  1. Solar thermal panels

Whilst some solar panels turn sunlight into power or electricity, solar thermal panels are an energy-efficient way of turning it into heat. Although the upfront cost of installing solar thermal panels might seem high, using solar thermal panels will cut costs on your heating bill, and massively reduce the carbon footprint of the property.
Another advantage is that once installed, they could benefit from the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), a scheme designed to financially reward those who opt to install environmentally friendly heating options. These panels would be a good choice for houses with south-facing roofs and houses that receive a large amount of sunlight throughout the day.
  1. Biomass boilers

Biomass boilers use wood as fuel, which is both renewable and cheap to buy, making biomass boilers a cheaper and more energy efficient option to heat your home, while reducing your carbon footprint. However, you will need the space for the storage of biomass, so this is not suitable for multiple-house developments.
As with solar thermal panels, by installing a biomass boiler you could be eligible for annual payments from the Renewable Heat Incentive. The cost of installing a biomass boiler may seem high, but the reduction in your heating bill and the possibility of annual payments mean that biomass boilers can be a more lucrative option in the long term.
You may wish to install a biomass boiler rather than a ground source heat pump if you do not want to dig up your garden.
  1. Storage heaters or immersion heaters

Both storage heaters and immersion heaters can be effective cost- and energy-saving heating systems. These options can be cheaper because of the ability to choose which time of day they use electricity to heat up, so it is possible to make larger savings by avoiding peak times.
At RQ Capital we love working on property developments that enable low-emission living for a brighter future. Get in touch today to discuss how we can work together to bring your development to life.