It was recently confirmed all new build homes will be heated by high efficiency air source heat pumps (ASHPs) from 2025 under the Future Homes Standard (FHS).

Now, the government has committed £1.5 billion to extend the Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS), funding 200,000 grants from 2025 to 2028.

Demand is growing for qualified heat pump engineers to install high efficiency, low carbon heating systems in new builds and existing buildings.

Heat pumps for new builds

The FHS (also referred to as the Future Homes and Buildings Standard) is another name for proposed changes to the Building Regulations, including Part 6 and Part L (conservation of fuel and power), and seeking evidence on previous changes to Part O (overheating). The new standards will mainly affect new builds and non-domestic buildings.

The government recently launched a consultation to finalise the new standards, which will come into effect in 2025. The document makes it clear that ASHPs will play a primary role in heating new homes.

Will gas boilers be allowed to in new builds from 2025?

Under the FHS, heating appliances must be able to transition to zero carbon alongside changes to the electricity grid, therefore heating appliances that use fossil fuels will not meet the new standards. That includes gas boilers, combi boilers, ‘hydrogen ready’ boilers and hybrid heat pumps.

This is not news for heating engineers!

We’ve had the interim uplift to Part L in 2022 and have known for a long time that we cannot meet our legally binding commitment to net zero 2050 without transitioning to low-carbon heating. The publication of the FHS consultation simply confirms what we already know.

This is a great opportunity for heating engineers to help the UK move towards a cleaner and greener future, where homes are warmer, more energy efficient and cheaper to run, by training as a heat pump engineer.

Heat pumps in existing homes

Following the FHS consultation, the government announced that it had allocated £6 billion to cut energy usage and bills, as promised in the Autumn Statement 2022.

This includes £1.5 billion to continue the BUS from 2025 to 2028 and a new £400m grant to fund energy efficiency upgrades to radiators and insulation (further details are expected soon).

What is the Boiler Upgrade Scheme?

The BUS provides grants of £7,500 to homeowners who want to replace their heating system with an ASHP. It is designed to reduce the high upfront costs associated with ASHP installation and incentivise the uptake of heat pumps in existing buildings.

How many heat pumps will be installed under the Boiler Upgrade Scheme?

The remaining budget for year 3 of the BUS, which runs from 1 April 2024 to 31 March 2025 is £150 million, enough to fund 20,000 grants of £7,500 (OFGEM).

The new funding will support a further 200,000 installations over three years to 31 March 2028.

Heat pump training in 2024

Our LCL Awards Level 3 Award in the Installation and Maintenance of Air Source Heat Pump Systems is ideal for experienced heating engineers looking to transfer their skills and experience to the low carbon sector while learning something new for 2024.

This qualification is RQF regulated and recognised by the Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS).

There has never been a better time to train as a heat pump engineer. Get in touch to find out more!

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