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Vaillant Heat Pump Challenge

What the judges were looking for with the three finalists

The Vaillant Heat Pump Challenge asked installers and homeowners to share their heat pump installs, shining a light on the true possibilities of heat pumps, and the wide variety of homes where the technology is providing a highly efficient source of heating and hot water.

Following the closing date for entries, we’ve been given insight into what the five-strong judging panel look for when shortlisting the winning entries received, together with a summary on some of the projects that were submitted.

What the judges were looking for

Joined by broadcaster and architecture pundit, Kevin McCloud, the judging panel also includes Mark Wilkins, Technologies and Training Director at Vaillant; Jade Lewis, Chief Executive, at the Sustainable Energy Association; Ian Rippin, Chief Executive Officer of MCS – the Microgeneration Certification Scheme; and Simon Melbourne, System Sales and Design Manager at Vaillant.

The judges discussed each of the projects, and the challenges they overcame when transitioning to a heat pump system, before scoring each project against four criteria for its commitment, challenge, reasoning and results.

Mark Wilkins commented: “The Vaillant Heat Pump Challenge aimed to open the debate around installing and living with a heat pump and delve into what is possible with this low carbon technology. Having had a look at the entries we’ve received, I can confidently say I think we’ve achieved this. The challenge for the judging team is to select just three winning entries.”

Entry roundup

Ahead of the three finalists being announced later this month here's a look at some of the property types that have made the move to this low carbon technology.

Older properties are often incorrectly perceived as unsuitable for a low temperature heating system, largely due to limitations of space and the original construction of the buildings. However, the entries we’ve seen go some way to dispelling this belief. Submissions include mid and end-terrace properties from the 1800’s through to those originally heated using solid fuels.

We’ve also seen several entries of unusual projects, such as a Grade II listed barn conversion. Here, innovative thinking was required to navigate the heritage features of the property to effectively design and install a heat pump system to meet the heating and hot water requirements. Finally, we’ve also received entries from converted boat houses set in rural locations. Exposed to the elements, it may not seem the most obvious choice for a heat pump however both entries have showcased the how the technology is keeping the properties warm, effectively, and efficiently.

Mark Wilkins concludes: “With a breadth of properties submitted, the judging panel have looked out for projects where perhaps a heat pump wasn’t the most obvious choice initially. This could be for several reasons including the property type, its age, or even its location. In addition, we consider the legacy heating system and what it was both the homeowner and installer wanted to achieve by installing a heat pump. Finally, we look at what’s happened since the heat pump has been installed. Factors we’ll be paying close attention to include, has the homeowner seen a reduction in energy usage or system efficiencies? This is particularly crucial as we continue to debunk some of the myths surrounding the technology, of which a central part will come from showcasing its benefits too.”


If you’d like to learn more about our heat pump range, visit our training area to book onto our free training courses today.