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A Complete Guide to Air Source Heat Pump Installation

Author: Jack Lloyd
Updated: Oct 23, 2023
6 minutes read

With the potential ban on gas boilers coming into place by 2035, there is no better time to start thinking about upgrading your system to an eco-friendlier energy source. It is the government's goal to reach net zero by 2050 but there is still a long way to go in order to reach this.

There are plenty of eco-friendly options coming into play but not all of them are as new to the market, including air source heat pump installation. These have been around for quite some time and as such, have a solid place in the market, and for many good reasons.

Heat pump being installed

How Do Air Source Heat Pumps Work?

Air source heat pumps work by taking ambient air from outside, and converting it into energy that can be used within the home. An air source heat pump will work even in colder months and it is especially practical for underfloor heating systems that require lower flow temperatures to work efficiently.

Whilst an air source heat pump will use electricity to power it, its energy output is far greater, making it an eco-friendly option for your home. Should you get a heat pump?

Advantages and Disadvantages of Air Source Heat Pump Installation

As with any type of installation on your property, there can be advantages and disadvantages of work being carried out. We’ve listed some of the main advantages and disadvantages below.

How Is an Air Source Heat Pump Installed?

Air source heat pump installation can be a fairly painless process, depending on how big the property is. The installation process can last anywhere from 1-5 days and possibly longer for commercial scale installations. Of course, air source pump installation will go much smoother if you hire a professional company to install your unit, as it will require certified electrical and plumbing work to be carried out. We’ve included all the steps of an air source heat pump installation below.

Get No Less Than Three Quotes

We would advise you to obtain no less than three air source heat pump installation quotes before you consider any work being done on your property. Your air source heat pump installation should be carried out by a professional who is MCS Certified.

You can see how many air source heat pumps have been installed to date in the graph below.

Site Inspection

It is worthwhile to know that not all companies offer a free site inspection. Some companies will charge around £150 for an inspection, but they will take this off the cost of installation if you choose to use their services. A site inspection to determine the feasibility of air source heat pump installation should take around an hour to complete, at most.

The engineer will document how big your home is, how many rooms you will need to heat, the level of insulation you currently have and the size of your radiators. From here, they will be able to offer advice on the best air source heat pump installation for your property, so you can get the most out of it.

Installing the Outside Conductor Unit

The first step of your air source heat pump installation will usually start at the conductor unit, which is usually installed outside. This could be positioned on a concrete block, or securely mounted to an outer wall. The size of the unit will depend on your requirements. Your heat pump installers will determine the best position for your conductor to be installed before starting the air source heat pump installation process.

The Indoor Units

Once the outdoor components have been installed, the heat pump installers will move indoors. The biggest indoor component for your air source heat pump installation will be your hot water cylinder. The installer can recommend the best size tank for your requirements. The most common hot water sizes are 150 litres to 300 litres. This again will depend on the size of your home.

It is worthwhile to note that if you currently have an existing hot water cylinder, it is unlikely to be suitable for your new air source heat pump installation needs, and will likely need to be replaced. The good news is that a reputable heat pump installer will remove your old system for you.

Connecting All Components

At this stage, your heat pump installer will link everything together. This will usually involve some drilling through your walls. Your heat pump installer will connect your external conductor unit to your hot water cylinder, as well as to each radiator and any underfloor heating system you may have. This is the point where your old system will also be removed, if it hasn’t been already.

Testing Your Air Source Heat Pump Installation

The final part of your air source heat pump installation is the testing stage. The heat pump installers will test the installation is working exactly how it should, and be able to show you around how the system works. Once you are happy, your device should be registered with your local Distribution Network Operator within 10 days of installation. The installer will usually do this for you, but it is wise to check before they leave.

Air Source Heat Pump Installation Cost

Air source heat pump installation can range anywhere from £7,000 to £18,000, which can feel steep, but fortunately Government grants are available. This includes the Boiler Upgrade Scheme and the Green Deal. The total cost will largely depend on how long complicated the installation is and therefore how long it takes to complete.

Whilst air source heat pump installation can have a high upfront cost, the heat pumps have an average life span of 15-20 years. During this time, the heat pump should have paid for itself with the savings you will make each year. There are steps you can take to maximise on how much you save, which are best to do before you begin your air source heat pump installation, such as properly insulating your property.

Popular Heat Pump Brands

A Daikin heat pump, Nibe heat pump or Samsung air source heat pump model has become a popular choice for air source heat pump installation over the last few years. Each of these manufacturers offer a range of heat pumps and you can download a brochure from each of their websites and discuss any preferences you may have with your heat pump installers.

You will also be able to find an installer directly from the website(s) which may be of benefit. As training courses are offered to installers bases on brand specific air source heat pumps and will be able to give you the best advice on these systems. The available brochures that can be downloaded will also offer an in-depth guide to all elements of your air source heat pump installation.

Visit these websites to find more information:

Post Air Source Heat Pump Installation Maintenance

After your air source heat pump installation has been carried out, you will be pleased to know that there are very little maintenance requirements to worry about. For the most part, heat pumps work at their best when left alone. You will need to get your heat pump professionally serviced every one to three years, but you can carry out most light maintenance requirements yourself.

Removing Leaves and Debris

You may need to occasionally remove stray leaves and other debris that make their way into the heat pump fan. This can be most problematic during autumn months when trees shed all of their leaves and result in them being blown around your garden.

Replacing Filters

The filters in your heat pump will become less effective over time and you will need to replace them with new filters. This will ensure that the air that circulates around your system is as clean as possible.

Changing the filter on your heat pump is usually relatively easy to do. If you are unsure, home inspection insider has a handy guide to guide you through changing your heat pump filter. Otherwise, your installer should guide you through this process after your air source heat pump installation is complete.

Refill Anti-Freeze

You should refill the anti-freeze solution once a year to keep it running at its best. You should also de-ice the outside conductor during winter months. It should not take a great deal of time to de-ice your system, but it will make a difference to its efficiency and therefore the amount of money you save on energy.


If an air source heat pump sounds appealing to you then the next step would be to do is enter a few details and one of our experts will be in touch with you shortly.