In 2023, nearly 120,000 heat pumps were sold. According to Finnish Heat Pump Association SULPU statistics, the sales of heat pumps fell by 40% after the 50% increase in the peak year of 2022. In addition to the previous year being a peak year, other factors contributing to the sales normalising in 2023 to the level of 2021 were the decline in construction, the rise in interest rates, and the gloomier investment climate of the economy and households. A total of 90.000 air-to-air heat pumps and 12.000 air-to-water heat pumps were sold. With 12.000 pump installations, the ground source heat pump sector was the only one to remain at the level of the previous peak year. Exhaust air heat pumps in single-family houses suffered from the declining rate of construction of single-family houses. In 2023, just over 2,500 EAHPs were sold. In Finland, 800 million euros were invested in heat pumps in year 2023.
However, the heat pump sector enjoys very good future prospects. Energy price increases and fluctuations as well as the demand for heating solutions that are as independent as possible are a plus for heat pumps. As a result of the increase in the price of oil, gas, district heating, and electricity, the profitability of heat pumps has continued to improve. Staggering electricity bills have taken many families by surprise, causing energy poverty even in Finland – a phenomenon much talked about in Europe. Heat pumps extract most of a house’s energy from around the building, thus mitigating the impact of price increases and fluctuations of delivered energy. If ever there was a time to undertake a heat pump project, it is now as pumps and installation capacity are available again after last year’s rush, says Jussi Hirvonen, Executive Director of the Finnish Heat Pump Association SULPU.
Heating is becoming electrified and heat-pump sourced. To combat climate change, we must stop using fossil fuels, but in the long term, we must also stop burning biofuels. In Finnish conditions, heat pumps are often the most practical and cost-effective solution for combustion-free transition. Using electricity, heat pumps can very effectively harness even low-temperature ambient and waste heat both for heating and cooling. Fortunately, electrification of heat is well under way in Finland. EUR 9 billion has already been invested in the 1.6 million heat pumps installed in Finland. They now provide about 20 percent of the heating of buildings in Finland. We can, of course, also be proud of the fact that in Europe, in 2022, Finland had the highest sales volume of heat pumps per 1,000 citizens. This year’s sales, too, makes us a strong candidate for the European top spot along with Sweden and Norway.
Last year, many European countries fell short of the heat pump sales of the previous peak year, but tremendous growth is expected in the heat pump sector. Reaching an adequate level of electrification of heating, in line with EU’s FIT for 55 package and RePowerEU plan, requires 50 to 60 million heat pumps already in 2030. This means tripling the number of heat pumps in Europe within seven years – currently at 20 million. Seven billion worth of new heat pump factory investment decisions have been made.
The International Energy Agency (IEA) estimates that in 2050, a total of 1.8 billion heat pumps are needed in the world for the heating and cooling sector’s objectives for combating climate change to stay on track.
Sales statistics and charts for 2023 are available via the link provided.