Heat pumps slammed as staggering 97% support U-turn on gas boiler ban

Countryfile: Guest about heat pumps and climate change

The UK is set to ban the sale of new gas boilers from 2035 with the Government promoting the installation of heat pumps to help achieve net zero emissions, but Express.co.uk readers think the timeline should be reviewed, a new poll has shown.

Ministers aim to have 600,000 heat pumps installed each year by 2028 but uptake is low with around 55,000 fitted last year, with the UK lagging behind other European countries.

Housing Secretary Michael Gove said last week that the proposals need to be looked at, telling The Telegraph: “I think we should relax the pace”.

He also warned in an interview with Times Radio that the transition needs to take into account the cost of living crisis facing the country. 

The cost of installing heat pumps is one factor preventing households from making the change with air-source heat pumps costing about £14,000 compared to the £1,900 cost of installing a new boiler.

READ MORE: Michael Gove hints at incoming U-turn on gas boiler ban

In a poll that ran from 3.30pm on Thursday, July 27,  to 3.30pm on Wednesday, August 2, Express.co.uk asked readers: “Should Government relax heat pump transition?”

Overall, 3,115 votes were cast with the overwhelming majority, 97 percent (3,011 people) answering “yes” in favour of the transition being relaxed, while three percent (92 people) said “no” it should not. A further 12 people said they did not know.

Dozens of comments were left below the accompanying article as readers debated the timeline for adopting heat pumps.

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The predominant argument was in support of the Government dropping its push for heat pumps, with username  Grimreaper commenting: “Do away with this idea.”

Similarly, username xl1 said: “It’s a technology that doesn’t work on a large percentage of UK housing stock. It’s not for purpose, so yes.”

Username nallum said: “We don’t want them and we’re not having them.”

And Username DoggyDay agreed, added: “They should not only delay it, they should just bin the idea, they are completely ineffectual and way too expensive for the majority of people who can’t afford them.”

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Yet some readers were more accepting of the need to transition away from gas boilers. Username SaraMay said: “Difficult, we need to do something about the environment but most can’t afford a heat pump.”

While username Malph said: “If you want one of these things, by all means have one. Just don’t force them onto people.”

A UK Government spokesman said that the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero is still aiming to keep the existing timeframe. They told This is Money: “We are aiming to phase out the installation of new and replacement natural gas boilers by 2035, at the latest, in line with the natural replacement cycle and once costs of low carbon alternatives have come down.”

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