How many kWh does a heat pump use per year?
The kWh (electricity) use of a heat pump varies widely depending on:
- The size of the home
- How well your home is insulated
- The energy efficiency of the heat pump
- How warm you set your thermostat
In general though, heat pumps in Irish houses can typically consume anywhere from 1,000 to 7,000 kWh per year. A heat pump in a typical 3-bedroom semi-d with adequate insulation would use around 3,000 kWh per year to maintain a comfortable temperature 24-7 year-round. Use our heat pump kWh calculator to estimate the electricity consumption for a heat pump in your home.
How much does it cost to run a heat pump in Ireland?
As with electricity usage, heat pumps have a wide range of running costs, with anywhere from €200 – €1,500 being possible for Irish houses. The amount for a typical 3-bed semi-d with adequate insulation would be around €660 per year.
Remember, this is for year-round 24-7 comfortable temperatures. When comparing to the cost of heating with oil or gas, consider the cost to keep your home cosy around the clock with those fuels.
Are heat pumps cheaper to run than gas/oil?
In Ireland, heat pumps are cheaper to run than gas or oil, provided your house is well-insulated. While the exact saving varies from year to year, you can typically expect a heat pump to be around 40% cheaper to run than gas, and 50% cheaper to run than oil.
Unfortunately though, many houses in Ireland are poorly insulated. It’s common for people to run the heating only in the evening, as trying to keep some houses warm throughout the day would be unaffordable. Heat pumps do not run efficiently in this way. Indeed, they are more expensive to run than gas or oil in these kinds of houses.
Air-source vs ground-source heat pump running costs
Ground-source heat pump are significantly more expensive to install than air-source heat pumps. However, they’re typically a little more efficient than air-source heat pumps. This can result in energy and running cost savings of around 10-15%.
To be sure, check the heat pump datasheets for their SCOP efficient rating. This is the number that really counts, and while it is typically higher for ground-source heat pumps, it’s not always the case.
What is the cheapest way to run a heat pump?
Here are some tips to run your heat pump in the lowest-cost way. Together, they can save you hundreds of Euro per year.
- Keep your heatpump on consistently: Heat pumps are different to oil and gas. You should keep them running consistently, not only in the evening, for maximum efficiency
- Turn your thermostat down: The World Health Organisation advise that 18 °C is a safe and well-balanced indoor temperature in cold and temperate climates
- Use nighttime setback temperatures: Program your heat pump controller to run a few degrees cooler overnight
- Insulate your home: This should already be done before installing a heat pump. But there may still be opportunities to improve heat retention
- Go solar: Solar panels can generate electricity to help power your heat pump
- Use a high-quality heat pump: Efficiency varies among heat pump brands in Ireland. The most efficient heat pumps have a higher upfront price, but can cost less over the long run. It’s best to have an SCOP efficiency over 4.2
Experiment with our heat pump kWh calculator to see the difference for yourself.
Heat pump servicing costs
Heat pumps cost around €70 per year for servicing. This is very close to the €80 cost for an oil boiler’s annual servicing cost, or the €90 for a gas boiler service.