About Nesta

Nesta is an innovation foundation. For us, innovation means turning bold ideas into reality and changing lives for the better. We use our expertise, skills and funding in areas where there are big challenges facing society.

  • VisitAHeatPump.com helps users visit a heat pump near them via an online platform
  • 150 heat pump owners have signed up, from London to Falkirk
  • Energy Minister Lord Callanan says the “fantastic new service will help families work out whether a heat pump is right for them”

London, 11 April: Nesta, the innovation charity, is collaborating with homeowners across the UK to help people visit a heat pump in their local area.

VisitAHeatPump.com is a new service for householders considering installing a heat pump in their homes. The online platform helps householders to book visits in their local areas where heat pumps are already in use. Users can search via their postcode on the website, find nearby owners and book a visit to see a heat pump in person.

150 heat pump owners have already signed up across the UK, from Falkirk to Bristol. London and central Scotland are both leading the way with the most heat pump hosts, while East Anglia is becoming a heat pump hot spot with 11 hosts already advertising visits.

Transitioning from gas boilers to low-carbon heating systems like heat pumps will be essential for the UK to reach its net zero goals. But despite this, most people in the UK have never seen a heat pump – there are currently 250,000 heat pumps in UK homes, according to Nesta’s analysis of MCS data.

Previous research from Nesta has found high satisfaction amongst heat pump owners. It found that among people who have had a heat pump installed in their current home, 81% are as satisfied or more satisfied with heat pumps compared to their previous heating system. The figure is similar - 83% - when looking at heat pump owners in Victorian or older properties.

Nesta’s Visit A Heat Pump scheme aims to help people learn about heat pumps in a real-world setting. The project is designed to give consumers more confidence in heat pump technology and increase the likelihood of switching from gas to low-carbon heating.

Case study:

John Condon and Michael Davies, who live in a 2-bedroom Victorian terraced home in East London, have signed up as hosts in the hope of demystifying the process for those interested in installing their own. John said: “We would have loved to have visited a heat pump before we installed it. You need to think about where the equipment goes and if you can do that beforehand and see other people's solutions, that would have helped our process.”

John, a heat pump owner who has signed up to the scheme, with his heat pump system

Katy King, deputy director of sustainable future at Nesta, said:

“Changing the way we heat our homes is one of the most meaningful things we can do to cut carbon emissions. Many homeowners are keen to make green improvements but don’t get the opportunity to see how low-carbon technologies, such as heat pumps, work in action.

“Our new service makes it easier for prospective heat pump owners to visit a heat pump near them and ask an actual heat pump user any questions they might have. We hope that if more people can see heat pumps in real-life settings, then more people will have confidence that a heat pump is the right fit to heat their home.”

Minister for Energy Efficiency and Green Finance, Lord Callanan, said:

“We already know that heat pumps are three times more efficient than gas boilers and demand is soaring, with applications to our Boiler Upgrade Scheme up 75 per cent on last February.

“This fantastic new service will help families work out whether a heat pump is right for them, and we’ll continue supporting households to make the switch with our £7,500 grant.”

Greg Jackson, Founder of Octopus Energy, said:

“Heat pumps are about four times more efficient than old-fashioned gas boilers. And with Octopus’ smart tariffs, they are cheaper to run too.

“Survey after survey shows owners prefer them to their old gas boilers, but the UK is still way behind other countries in adoption due to misinformation campaigns.

“Initiatives like Nesta's ‘Visit a Heat Pump’ help to break down the myths, allowing potential buyers to learn about them from people who know best - those who already have them and love them.”


Notes to editors

  1. For more information on the analysis or to speak to one of the experts involved, please contact Grace Fothergill, Media Officer, on 020 7438 2576 or [email protected]. Spokespeople are available for broadcast interviews.

About Nesta

We are Nesta, the UK's innovation agency for social good. We design, test and scale solutions to society's biggest problems. Our three missions are to give every child a fair start, help people live healthy lives, and create a sustainable future where the economy works for both people and the planet.

For over 20 years, we have worked to support, encourage and inspire innovation. We work in three roles: as an innovation partner working with frontline organisations to design and test new solutions, as a venture builder supporting new and early stage businesses, and as a system shaper creating the conditions for innovation.

Harnessing the rigour of science and the creativity of design, we work relentlessly to change millions of lives for the better. Find out more at nesta.org.uk

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