To get a deeper understanding of the barriers and motivators behind retraining to be able to offer customers low carbon technologies such as heat pumps, Vaillant recently surveyed more than 1,300 installers, registered on the company’s loyalty programme Advance.
82% of installers surveyed were currently not installing heat pumps although 87% of installers answered ‘yes’ or ‘maybe’ when asked if they were interested in undertaking air source heat pump training in the next 12 months.
The top three motivators of these installers looking to undertake heat pump training were future-proofing their business or career development, personal financial benefits from installing a diverse range of heating technologies, and the benefits for the environment by supporting the net zero agenda.
Vaillant estimates that heat pump training for an existing heating engineer can take up to 9.5 days – however, on average, the installers surveyed only needed a further 6.5 days training, as they already had some skills required to fit a heat pump.
Time away from the tools also didn’t appear to be an immediate barrier to undertaking heat pump training. Out of the 994 installers who expressed an interest in upskilling, almost two thirds (64%) said they would still be interested in undertaking training after learning the required training time.
55% of installers felt that they would prefer ‘entirely in-person training’ when it came to air-source heat pumps, whilst ‘a combination of in-person and online’ was preferred by 40% of those surveyed.
Mark Wilkins, Technologies and Training Director for Vaillant, said: “Whilst it’s encouraging to see that most installers are keen to upskill with additional heat pump training, some are also wary about the demand from consumers being low – and we’ve seen this through the recent BUS inquiry. In our response to this inquiry, we have urged the Government to set a clear strategy for consumer education and awareness to help drive demand for heat pumps and therefore the training required for installers.
“The Heat Training Grant is a significant step towards making heat pump training more accessible for the installer community, wherever they are in their career. I’m delighted that Vaillant is also supporting this scheme, and we are working diligently with our training partners and internal teams to enhance our current heat pump training offer to ensure it simplifies the process for installers, providing them with cost-effective and accessible training to gain the relevant qualifications to take a heat pump installation through from the design stage all the way to commissioning.”
For more information on Vaillant’s current training offer for installers, please visit: https://www.vaillant.co.uk/for-installers/training/