Neil Kitching’s latest blog is about his experience of going ‘all electric’ in 2023 – heat pump, solar pv, battery, electric car and smart meter. As Neil’s regular readers will suspect, this is a thorough and honest evaluation of 12 months of what is an (almost) all-electric experience. There are a lot of positives reported and some uncertainties to be resolved. Here’s the final part of the post:

Financial Payback

This is extremely complex and will vary based on your circumstances.  In my case it is too complex to work out given that I invested in an EV, heat pump, solar and battery at the same time so there are too many variables.

My gut feeling is that solar in a good location will payback in around 10 years; a battery may take longer and then it will depend at what rate the battery degrades over time.  The heat pump is an expensive investment that based on electricity costing four times that of gas may never payback in simple financial terms (but neither does a new fitted kitchen, double glazing, or a foreign holiday)!  It may, however, increase the value of your house.  In Scotland there are proposals to force householders to install a ‘clean heat’ system soon after purchasing a house.  Any house with a heat pump already installed will be more attractive to a buyer and will attract those who want to live in an environmentally friendly house.  It should therefore increase the value of your house.

Home Energy Use

My electricity consumption has tripled from 2,800 to 9,100 units per year.  Interestingly this is approximately one third home use, electric car charging and heat pump.  Of course, I have eliminated my 11,000 units of gas consumption and reduced my purchase of petrol for the car.  From a society perspective my energy needs are more local and secure, no longer reliant on fuel imports from overseas unstable regimes.

What Next?

I could buy a second EV to eliminate my use of petrol and diesel, but I am keeping this under review as our family circumstances change.   We may be able to manage with one car, in which case I’d like to swap our current Nissan with an electric car with a longer battery range.

I’d also like to invest in triple glazing for all windows in our house, but this is hard to justify at present given we installed double glazing 15 years ago.

The Government needs to narrow the wide gap in prices between gas and electricity.  This should be possible given the growing number of windfarms.  They might have a marginal running cost of less than 5p per unit, but the energy companies sell this to us at 27p per unit.

Householders need to be told if their Council is planning to build or facilitate a heat network (district heating) through their street.  If they are, then it would be better to connect to the heat network than invest in an individual heat pump.

We also need a smooth, joined-up approach to make it easier to buy a heat pump as a ‘distress’ purchase, when your gas or oil boiler breaks down.  This will require quick access to advice, grants and loans, and a speedy installation service from installers.”


Neil can be contacted at Neil Kitching @carbonchoicesuk (twitter) or by email at 

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