Europe’s largest heating markets represent significant opportunities for gas boiler-heat pump hybrid systems – known as hybrid heat pumps – but significant barriers are keeping the technology from realising its full market potential, new research has found.

Daikin Alterma hybrid heat pump

Major heating equipment manufacturers, such as Bosch, Daikin, BDR Thermea, Viessmann, Vaillant and Ariston, now offer hybrid heat pumps. According to research firm Delta-ee’s report ‘The State of Play of the Hybrid Heat Pump Market’, with hybrid products offering the potential to achieve A++ ratings on Europe’s new Energy Label and open up the gas boiler replacement market (worth an estimated €25 billion per year) for heat pumps, there are big expectations that they will do well.

However, barriers such as system complexity, uncertainty over running cost savings, pricing and a lack of knowledge and awareness of the technology among installers have slowed the technology’s development, said Lukas Bergmann, Delta-ee’s heat pump research manager. The firm found that hybrid heat pumps have got off to a slow start in Europe, with less than 10,000 units sold in 2014.

However, the report said significant opportunities exist for the technology in the French retrofit market, the Italian new-build market, and the UK renewable heat market.