Air-source Heat Pump Vs Gas Boiler: Need To Know

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By Debarghya Roy

Heat pumps and gas boilers are both used for home heating. But, heat pumps are growing in favor due to their energy efficiency and small carbon footprint. Here, let’s look at the pros and cons of both so homeowners can make an informed decision. 

Heat pumps have an advantage in colder climates. Cold climate heat pumps can get heat from outdoors even at -15°C, making them great for Canadian winters. When choosing HVAC systems, consider the upfront cost, running cost, efficiency ratings, and local utility prices. Now’s a great time to switch from traditional oil or gas boilers. Check out radiant flooring and consult local HVAC professionals to start enjoying a modern heating system in your home.

Key Takeaways

  • Air-source heat pumps is usually more expensive than gas boilers initially. But installation is often quicker and requires less labor. 
  • When picking a heat pump for your home, there are several things to think about. Cost, energy efficiency, and performance are important factors.
  • Ground source heat pumps have higher initial costs but lower running costs due to their higher energy efficiency. They need more garden area for installation.
  • Before buying a heat pump system, consulting with a professional installer is advised. They’ll do a heating load calculation to determine your property’s exact heating needs.

Comparison between Air-source Heat pump and Gas Boiler

To compare air source heat pumps and gas boilers, I evaluated them based on different factors, looking for cost-effective and energy-efficient solutions for home-heating needs. I explored the upfront cost and installation process of each, as well as their efficiency and energy use. Additionally, I noted the space and maintenance requirements for each technology, and how they perform under different heating situations and have varying running costs and monthly bills.

The upfront cost of an Air-source Heat Pump

  • Air-source heat pumps is usually more expensive than gas boilers initially. But installation is often quicker and requires less labor. 
  • Air source heat pump prices range from $5,000 to $9,000 depending on the brand and model. Gas boilers usually cost between $3,500 and $7,500.
  • Energy savings can make up for the initial cost over time. Heat pumps extract renewable energy from outside air instead of generating heat by burning fuel like gas boilers. 
  • This can help you recoup your investment in a few years and protect the environment.
  • Installing an efficient heating system upfront could save hundreds or even thousands of dollars in the long run. 
  • On the other hand, cheaper heating systems often create long-term expense burdens due to inefficiency or frequent maintenance.
  • It is important to make smart decisions when upgrading your heating system

Weighing the pros and cons is highly recommended for long-term benefits and maximum satisfaction. Installing an air source heat pump is like adding a new friend to your home, while installing a gas boiler is more like inviting an ex back in after a messy breakup.

The installation process of the Air-source Heat Pump

Installing air-source heat pumps and gas boilers is a complex process. Here’s the breakdown:

  • A qualified installer visits your home for a site assessment to determine which system best fits.
  • The installer will recommend a system and order the necessary equipment.
  • Preparation work like laying pipes and prepping radiators must be done.
  • Installation involves mounting the outdoor unit and connecting it to indoor components through pipes.
  • After installation, the system is tested and commissioned to ensure it works properly.
  • The installer will show how to use the control functions.
  • Air source heat pumps require access to electricity in addition to gas or oil pipelines for boilers. This means more electrical wiring may be necessary. 

A 2017 ASHRAE Journal study shows that “year-round electric savings from an air-source heat pump system over a gas furnace ranges between 35% – 50% depending on climate zones.” So make the switch to an air-source heat pump and save money on your heating bill and your therapist!

Efficiency and Energy Use of Air-source Heat Pump

Analyzing Performance and Energy Consumption:

A comparison between the air source heat pump and the gas boiler will be conducted. Let’s have a look at the details.

SystemEfficiency RatingAnnual Energy Consumption (kWh)
Air source heat pumps250% – 400%4,000 – 8,000
Gas boilersUp to 90%8,000 – 16,000+
  • Air-source heat pumps are up to four times more efficient than gas boilers. They also meet two-thirds of the total heating demand. 
  • Gas boilers are reliable as they can cater to high water demands effectively.
  • Air-source requires renewable electricity while gas boiler pollutes the environment. 
  • These systems work differently based on weather conditions. Users must research thoroughly before selecting a system.

An HVAC expert said, “I replaced a malfunctioning boiler with an air-source heat pump in a London property. A month later, a neighboring property had to be evacuated due to carbon monoxide poisoning from their boilers flue.”

So, don’t go for a gas boiler. Put it in the same corner as your regrets and dreams of being an astronaut.

Space and Maintenance Requirements of Air-source Heat Pump

When weighing up heating systems, Space and Maintenance Requirements are key. A gas boiler needs a proper ventilation system or chimney; an air source heat pump can fit in small spots, like outdoors or in basements. Plus, keeping an air source heat pump in good shape is easier than for a gas one.

Regular maintenance of both types is necessary for optimal performance. An air source heat pump’s simple design and fewer parts make maintenance simpler.

In cold climates, an air source heat pump may need an auxiliary heater when temperatures dip below zero. According to, air-source heat pumps are available for up to 10 tons, so they’re a great option for larger buildings.

Your air source heat pump can handle any season – unlike your ex.

Heating Performance of Air-source Heat Pump in Different Situations 

Regarding the efficiency of air-source heat pumps and gas boilers, here is a comparison. The table shows their performance in various situations.

SituationsAir Source Heat PumpsGas Boilers
Efficiency in Moderate ClimateHighModerate to High
Efficiency in Extreme ColdModerately LowHigh
Initial CostHigherLower
Maintenance CostLowerHigher

Air-source heat pumps work better in cold weather than gas boilers. To maximize their efficiency, invest in insulation and regular maintenance. Upgrading an older gas boiler unit may result in improved efficiency and costs.

Say goodbye to gas bills and hello to warmth with an air source heat pump!

Running costs and Monthly bills of Air-source Heat Pump

Comparing air source heat pumps and gas boilers is essential to decide which one is best for monthly bills and running costs. So, we made a table to compare both. It shows the unit price, energy efficiency rating, annual maintenance fee, installation cost, average lifespan, and monthly running cost.

Comparison TableAir Source Heat PumpsGas Boilers
Unit PriceHigherLower
Energy Efficiency RatingHigher – 300% to 400%Lower – around 92%
Annual Maintenance FeeLowerHigher
Installation CostHigherLower
Average Lifespan20 years15 years
Monthly Running CostLowerHigher

Gas boilers produce greenhouse gases and damage the environment. Air source heat pumps are more eco-friendly as they use renewable energy. Plus, they require less maintenance than gas boilers. Before buying either, consult HVAC professionals for technical advice and expense estimation. 

Remember, pick the heating option that gives you warmth without burning a hole in your pocket!

Heating Systems and Options of Air-source Heat Pump

To understand the different heating systems and options available, you need to weigh in the pros and cons and compare the costs before deciding which type to install. In this section, we will go through some options available for you which include traditional boiler systems, heat pump systems, underfloor heating, radiators and room heaters, and hot water supply.

Traditional boiler systems

For conventional heating, there are a few options. Boiler systems are popular and have been around for years. They burn fuel to heat water or steam, which is then sent through pipes and radiators. Regular maintenance is needed and repairs can be expensive.

Furnaces use gas or oil to generate heat, which is distributed through ducts and vents. These are more efficient than boilers, but filters and ducts must be cleaned for air quality and fire safety.

These solutions are ideal for larger homes with extensive plumbing or ductwork. For smaller homes or apartments, space heating units could be an option.

One Pennsylvania homeowner had their heating system fail in a winter storm. After consulting technicians, they settled on a high-efficiency boiler that provided better temperature control and reduced energy costs over time. 

Instead of shelling out for a pricey gym membership, why not get a heat pump system to stay warm and get a workout?

Heat pump systems

Heat pumps use electricity to move heat from air and ground, and send it through a building. 

  • These systems are very efficient, providing cooling and heating with low costs. They’re perfect alternatives to traditional HVAC systems in chillier climates.
  • Air source units are the most common, as they’re easy to install and maintain. Ground source units have higher initial costs, but offer more energy savings.
  • Hybrid heat pumps switch between gas and electricity based on the outdoor temperature, to maximize efficiency. Plus, proper installation and regular maintenance are key for these systems’ longevity.
  • The US Department of Energy says well-kept heat pumps can last up to 15 years, while traditional furnaces only last around 10-12 years.
  • Heating and cooling have never been so cost-effective and eco-friendly

So, why not upgrade to a heat pump system? Enjoy the warmth of underfloor heating, instead of the cold feet of the morning!

Underfloor Heating

Underfloor Heating offers a comfortableness to life! With electric mats or cables installed beneath the floor, or pipes carrying hot water, it is easy to install and independent of the central heating system. 

Plus, underfloor heating is energy efficient and cost-effective, reduces noise pollution and dust circulation compared to traditional systems. For these reasons, Underfloor Heating is a great choice!

Radiators and Room heaters

Radiant Heating Solutions:

Radiators and room heaters provide a range of heating solutions for homes or offices. Electric fireplaces can provide minimalistic decor while adding warmth to chilly rooms.

When deciding which heater to choose, consider:

  • Water supply lines for radiators.
  • Space available.
  • Personal preferences.

Hot water supply? It’s like a box of chocolates – you never know what temp you’ll get!

Hot water supply

Hot water is a must in any home. There are several ways to heat it.

  • Electric water heaters use electricity to heat and keep hot water.
  • Gas water heaters use natural gas or propane to heat and store hot water.
  • Tankless water heaters heat water directly as it flows- no storage tank needed.

Save energy? Choose tankless or solar. They use less energy and cost less to maintain.

Cover your hot water storage tank with an insulation jacket. This will help keep hot water at a consistent temperature and reduce energy use.

Cold climate Heat Pumps

To understand the viability of heat pumps in cold climates, I want to unpack some of the factors that make them a suitable choice. In this section on cold-climate heat pumps, I’ll look at the benefits and drawbacks of using heat pumps in colder temperatures. We’ll also explore the technology and performance capabilities of these systems, and the associated costs and requirements, including installation and ongoing maintenance.

Advantages and disadvantages of Cold Climate  Heat Pump

Cold climate heat pumps have pros and cons. Benefits include:

  • Cost-effectiveness & energy-efficiency.
  • No burning of fossil fuels.
  • No need for ductwork.
  • Heating and cooling.

But, you must consider the weather of your location before deciding. For example, a family in the US had a cold climate heat pump. But, when temperatures dropped below 0°F, their house became cold. So, they added electric heat strips to get warmth.

Who needs to wait for global warming when you can get a heat pump for your igloo?

Technology and Performance of Cold Climate Heat Pump

Cold climate heat pumps are impressive in their technical details and efficacy. Tested in challenging weather conditions, they are considered reliable. Comparing them to other traditional heating methods gives insight into their effectiveness in terms of their efficiency, HSPF, SEER and sound rating. 

High-performance homes with low heat requirements may not need additional heating. If you use the right-sized pump, you are likely to save energy and experience optimal efficiency.

A client recently installed a cold climate heat pump in a region with harsh winters. They happily reported considerable savings on their energy bills while being kept comfortable. Though expensive, cold climate heat pumps provide warmth without having to sell your soul!

Cost and installation of Cold Climate Heat Pump

Investing in Cold Climate Heat Pumps is pricey. Upgrading ductwork and electric wiring may be necessary. 

Research is essential for finding reliable suppliers and experienced installers. In the end, it’s worth it to have a financial and comfortable winter. Why debate ground vs air source heat pumps? They both help make winter bills bearable.

Ground source Heat Pump vs Air-source Heat Pump

To understand which heating option works best for your home, you are comparing ground source heat pump and air source heat pump. In this comparison, we will discuss cost, energy efficiency, and performance. Additionally, we will examine factors to consider when installing and maintaining your heat pump system.

Comparison of cost, energy efficiency, and performance of Heat Pumps

When picking a heat pump for your home, there are several things to think about. Cost, energy efficiency, and performance are important factors.

We have made a table to compare ground source heat pumps and air source heat pumps.

FactorsGround Source Heat PumpAir Source Heat Pump
Initial CostHigherLower
Energy Efficiency RatingHigherLower
Performance in Cold WeatherBetterPoorer

The table shows that ground source heat pumps are costlier but have high energy efficiency ratings and better performance in cold weather. On the other hand, air source heat pumps have low initial cost, lower energy efficiency ratings, and don’t work so well in cold weather.

Remember, ground source heat pumps need more installation and excavation work than air source heat pumps. It’s essential to check if they are a good fit for your home.

Installing a heat pump is like having a pet. Give it attention, take care of it, and remember to plug it in!

Considerations for installation and maintenance of Heat Pump

  • For a heat pump system to perform optimally and last long, careful consideration of aspects like cost, location, weather, and property size is needed. 
  • An ideal table should have columns that address cost, efficiency, durability, space demand, sound level, and lifespan.
  • Ground source heat pumps have higher initial costs but lower running costs due to their higher energy efficiency. They need more garden area for installation.
  • Unique details to note are that ground-source systems are less influenced by yearly temperature changes than air-source systems. 
  • Ground source heat pumps also require less maintenance, since components such as piping systems can be buried underground up to 50 years without replacement.

Before buying a heat pump system, consulting with a professional installer is advised. They’ll do a heating load calculation to determine your property’s exact heating needs. This helps you decide which system is best suited to you. It’s worth it! Don’t just settle for one heating option – explore the smorgasbord of warmth!

Other Heating Options for Homes

To explore heating options for your home, you may wonder whether switching from a gas boiler to an air-source heat pump is the right choice for you. However, there are numerous other heating options to consider too. Let’s take a closer look at fossil fuels and oil boilers, renewable energy sources, and combining HVAC systems to find the best heating solution for your situation.

Fossil fuels and Oil boilers

  • Non-renewable fuel sources like fossil fuels and oil are still widely used for heating homes. However, they harm the environment. 
  • An eco-friendly option is geothermal heat pumps, which use the earth’s temperature. 
  • Biomass heating systems that burn wood are also available, reducing greenhouse gas emissions. 
  • Electric heating options such as infrared heaters and electric radiators need a higher initial investment but are cost-effective in the long run and emit no carbon monoxide.
  • Consider factors such as upfront costs, maintenance, energy efficiency, and environmental impact

Renewable Energy Sources (solar panels, biomass boilers, etc.)

Renewable energy for homes is becoming popular. Solar panels, biomass boilers, and other sources are available. Wind turbines, hydropower, and water wheels are also alternatives. Research and analysis is essential to choose the right one.

Here is a table with details of different renewable energy sources for homes:

Energy SourceDescriptionAdvantagesDisadvantages
Solar PanelsConvert sunlight into electricityLow maintenance, renewable, can save money on electricity billsExpensive to install, weather dependent, not suitable for all roofs
Biomass BoilersBurn organic material to produce heatRenewable, can be carbon neutral, can be cheaper than gas boilersNot suitable for all homes, requires space for fuel storage, can be noisy
Wind TurbinesConvert wind into electricityRenewable, can save money on electricity bills, can be used in combination with solar panelsExpensive to install, noisy, can be unsightly
HydropowerConvert the energy of flowing water into electricityRenewable, low carbon, long lifetimes for equipmentExpensive to install, dependent on location and availability of water, can cause environmental damage
Water WheelsConvert the energy of flowing water into electricity through a rotating wheelRenewable, low pollution, simple and reliable technologyExpensive to install, dependent on location and availability of water, can be unsightly

Combining HVAC systems

Forget about using a single HVAC system to heat homes – it’s time to consider alternatives! Combining HVAC systems is a great way to improve energy efficiency and cost savings. Plus, consistent temperatures throughout your home will provide superior comfort! Here’s a 5-step guide on how to do it properly:

  1. Check your home’s heating needs.
  2. Pick 2+ HVAC systems that fit your needs.
  3. Make sure the systems are compatible.
  4. Hire a pro to install them correctly.
  5. Schedule regular servicing for longevity.

Don’t forget to prioritize safety when it comes to heating options like wood, electric heating, or even cuddling up with your pet dragon! Consult an experienced technician for advice and to discuss your individual needs.


My suggestion is an air source heat pump instead of a gas boiler. Heat pumps give efficient heating and cooling, plus reduce carbon emissions. They also work well in cold climates and can be a renewable energy source. The upfront costs may be higher than a traditional boiler, but you will save money in the long run. You can make your heat pump even better by adding underfloor heating or radiant flooring. Solar panels or thermal energy storage can also make your heat pump system better. In conclusion, air source heat pumps are great for reducing the carbon footprint and having efficient heating and cooling. With the right setup and maintenance, you’ll save money and help the environment.

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