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Pump up the volume

The global heat pump market performed well in 2013 though geothermal technology performed poorly, according to the latest report from BSRIA

The world heat pump market increased 7.2 per cent by volume in 2013 to almost 2 million units – the growth was driven by the strong progression of sales of heat pump water heaters in the US especially on the one hand, and the recovery of the European market on the other.

However, in value terms, the market went down 6.9 per cent in 2013 compared with 2012. The reason behind the drop is attributed to the decrease in sales of large output units as well as increasing competition among suppliers.

In 2013 there was an increasing penetration of air-to-water cylinder integrated units, also known as heat pump water heater, following almost 40 per cent growth in 2012, the world market posted a 26.5 per cent growth in 2013.

However, this growth was mainly outside of Europe – within Europe the market size remained limited to a few thousand units.

Among the other air-to-water types, split systems continued to enjoy wide popularity, growing
15.6 per cent globally. These units are dominating the sales in Europe notably, with small capacity products accounting for a significant share of the market.

The growth appears to have taken place at the expense of monobloc systems, the volume of which decreased by 2 per cent in Europe overall.

The global demand for split unit systems was counterbalanced in China where sales of monobloc heat pumps accelerated by 13.8 per cent resulting in a positive 5.1 per cent growth worldwide. 

Poor performance in the geothermal heat pump segment was again recorded at a global level in 2013. Despite a 5 per cent rise in the US and China, sales declined within Europe resulting in a reduced volume of 1 per cent.

High initial investment and lack of political support are stated as the major obstacles to the development of the ground-water heat pump market by suppliers.

Emerging technology

Exhaust air heat pump combined with heat recovery is still an emerging technology. While widespread in Scandinavian countries the technology has started to expand in Northern Europe as a means to reduce heat losses and energy consumption in building.

Sales volumes are currently low but growing at 4.6 per cent on average at global level.    

In terms of outlook by technology, economic growth in China is expected to drive the demand for monobloc heat pump in the coming years while the slow recovery of the new-build activity and the lack of investment in the renovation sector in Europe are likely to curb the expansion of the split and exhaust air market segments.

Exhaust air and geothermal heat pumps are not forecast to achieve double-digit growth, expanding respectively 7.4 per cent and 4.9 per cent per year on average at global level over 2014-2017.

The tightening of product legislation either at European level (ErP) or by the US Energy Agency is expected to boost sales of heat pump water heaters (17 per cent CAGR).

BSRIA launched a new series of reports covering the heat pump market in the major countries in North America, Europe and Asia.Analysis of the 14 countries researched in 2013 provides a full understanding of the market.

It covers ground and water-to-water, air-to-water, exhaust air and cylinder-integrated units. Additional research has been undertaken to cover the forced air heat pump market typical in
the US.

BSRIA Heat Pump studies analyse the latest trend on the market in terms of sales developments, price evolution and the penetration of different product types.

Each report provides an analysis of the route to the market, where products are sold to, for which application and which type of installation is carried out.

Forecasts are made based on drivers and obstacles identified among industry experts and based on market experts’ experience.

In addition BSRIA provides recommendations on the potential challenges suppliers need to be aware of when making decision in their future business plan.

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