Go Greener Energy Services has welcomed a £13m scheme announced in Leeds to improve the heating capabilities of older council houses in the city, but has been moved to assure people that newer technologies such as heat pumps are still suitable for older properties as well as new homes.  

Leeds City Council has approved a plan to improve around 350 council houses in the Holbeck and Armley areas of the city – some of the most deprived areas of Leeds – via a £13m allocation from the Government’s Levelling-Up Fund. The houses are mainly back-to-back terrace houses which, like many around the UK, were built around the turn of the 19th century as towns and cities developed rapidly due to the Industrial Revolution and the need to house workers locally, cheaply and quickly. 

Made from better quality materials and with solid walls, rather than the cavity walls we normally see in property construction today, these older properties have stood the test of time. However, this does make them harder to insulate and hence harder to heat. But this scheme announced by Leeds City Council will work to carry out general repairs, improve insulation and replace doors and windows to increase the thermal efficiency of the homes and help the city meet its 2030 nett zero targets. 

A heat pump can efficiently heat an older property  

The announcement of the scheme has led to the long-standing debate over the suitability of renewable energy sources, such as heat pumps, in older properties to be reignited. There is an argument that heat pumps aren’t suitable in older properties because of this poor thermal efficiency, but that is true of any heating source. If a property doesn’t retain heat well, it will be more expensive to heat however you choose do it. 

An air source heat pump works by transferring air from outside and pumping it inside, via a process which uses refrigerants and a compressor to heat the air and therefore heat water in the system. It is true that you need space to host the external unit and a storage tank, which for small back-to-back terrace houses may be a challenge, but is not impossible. In fact in many cases, older Victorian properties are actually bigger, with more outside space than newer properties built in schemes where plots are much smaller and every available inch is accounted for and utilised to make money for a property development business.  

Home survey assessments make recommendations on your home’s thermal efficiency  

Whilst it is true that an older property presents a greater challenge in terms of a heat pump running efficiently, it is still possible. Go Greener Energy Services have worked in many older properties, including in Leeds and other areas of West Yorkshire. We carry out a thorough pre-installation assessment survey of the property and make recommendations on how the thermal efficiency of the home can be improved. This can include new insulation, but also increasing the size of the radiators, which is often an easier and more cost-effective way of improving the flow temperature and generating a better quality of heat in the home. In turn, this will ultimately lead to a more efficient method of heating and a reduction of your energy bills and carbon footprint. We can discuss with you whether a heat pump might be the best solution for your home and help you to access any government grants that you might be entitled to. 

So whatever type of home you have, in Leeds, West Yorkshire or anywhere across the UK, and whatever age it is, speak to Go Greener Energy Services and we can carry out a property survey to assess the best and most cost-effective way of improving your home heating. We are honest and transparent about what this could be. We also install gas boilers and there may be properties where this remains the most efficient way to heat the property, and if that is the case we will make that recommendation.  

If you are interested in installing a heat pump at your home, whatever its age, get in touch with us today We can provide accurate costings for home improvements, installation and subsequent potential energy savings to establish whether a heat pump is the best way to heat your home, as well as advise on grants and incentives to help with the cost. Our friendly team will be happy to help.  

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