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BUS grant boosts UK interest in heat pumps

UK: A sharp 173% month-on-month increase in boiler upgrade scheme (BUS) applications in October has been attributed to the government’s increase in the grant to £7,500.

Figures released today reveal that there were 3,355 applications in October, up from 1,231 applications in September. 

The Department for Energy Security and Net Zero said the increase was “likely a response” to the 50% grant uplift announced by the government in September.

The number of new applications in the first week since the grant uplift reached 1,150 – more than three times higher than the average weekly rate prior to the change. In the subsequent three weeks, new applications have remained nearly 60% higher than the previous weekly average. 

The scheme, which is available in England and Wales, provides financial support for families to switch from fossil fuel heating systems to a heat pump.

Since applications for grants opened for the scheme on 23 May 2022, there has been a total of 27,443 BUS voucher applications received up to the end of October 2023. The majority (96%) of grants were for air source heat pump installations. 

For those vouchers that have been redeemed, the median cost of a BUS installation of an air-source heat pump was £13,140 with a median capacity of 10kW. The equivalent figures for a ground-source heat pump were £24,847 and 12kW, respectively.


The results come alongside new independent research confirming that heat pumps are generally rated as quiet, with a majority of those people surveyed saying they did not notice the sound. 

The review found complaints from neighbours are rare – with people far more likely to hear the noise of traffic and dogs barking, over of the sound of nearby heat pumps. 

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