Many European countries have set up different certification and incentive schemes for heat pumps in order to encouraging the purchase of higher efficiency products and enable the end users to reap the true benefits of the growing technology. The incentive schemes only support the products that have achieved a certain performance standard so to provide confidence to users that they are choosing a good quality product.
In the UK, there are two main schemes: the Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS), and the Enhanced Capital Allowance (ECA) scheme. Although the criteria for COP differ between the schemes, they only accepted the products tested to EN 14511. This offers consumers further confidence in independently-assessed products.
The MCS, supported by the Department of Energy and Climate Change, focuses on product and installer certification, with grants available to applicants who meet the required criteria. Grants of up to £2500 per property are available to households, community organisations, public, private and not for profit sectors. Heat pumps with a capacity of up to 45 kW are accepted, however each technology has a minimum COP requirement.
In addition to thermal performance tests, safety tests must be conducted in accordance with EN 14511. Sound characteristic tests in accordance with ENV 12102 are also a requirement. This scheme also requires a factory production control visit to further ensure the consistent quality of the accepted products.