Innovative design approaches with heat pumps can lead very high performance if one wishes (always dependant on how much cash one wishes to part with of course!). For example, now, in 2011 it's possible to heat a large house by air, ground or water source heat pumps and realise a 10 minute reheat time for 200 litres of 60°C hot water, meaning virtually 'combi' or continuous and ‘instant’ hot water supply for a very low running cost. This performance is possible at operational outdoor temperatures of down to -20°C. Smaller properties may utilise low output heat pumps with large hot water tanks for longer heat up times and high storage, whilst performance is not what one would class high, performance is very ample.
Simple to use Intelligent Heating Controls can ensure higher comfort levels with heat pumps than with conventional heat sources. These heating systems are 400% efficient using approx 4 times less energy than conventional heating systems. This means they can easily be offset by on-site solar electric cells. If one uses electric boilers the investment in solar or even tidal technology would be four times greater. So for on-site generation, rather than £10k to £25k for 1kW to 3kW of PVs you would be looking at £40k to £100k to offset the same power output of an electric boiler with gas or oil.