Can you run a heat pump on solar?

As you explore alternative home heating methods, you might be wondering whether it’s possible to run a heat pump on solar power. The good news is that running a heat pump on solar energy can be both achievable and efficient, offering you a greener and more cost-effective solution for your home heating needs.

To power a heat pump with solar, you’ll generally need about 1500 watts of solar power (around 5 x 300-watt solar panels) for every 1 tonne of AC heat pump rating. 

In addition to solar panels, you may also require energy storage in deep cycle batteries and a suitably sized inverter. This setup allows you to harness the sun’s energy to heat your home and reduce your reliance on traditional energy sources.

Solar-assisted heat pumps, which combine a heat pump with a solar collector, are another option for sustainable home heating. These systems collect heat from the sun and transfer it to your heat pump, helping to further enhance efficiency and reduce energy consumption. 

So with that technical talk out of the way, let’s take a closer look at heat pumps and solar panels as a combination for your home.

Heat Pumps and Solar Panels

Types of Heat Pumps You Can Run on Solar 

There are several types of heat pumps available for residential or business use, including air source, ground source, and hot water heat pumps. Air source heat pumps extract heat from the surrounding air, while ground source heat pumps harness heat from the earth’s core. 

On the other hand, hot water heat pumps, warm up the water for various uses in your home or business.

And Then There Are Solar Panels 

Solar panels convert sunlight into electricity and use the panels, which are wired together into an array that connects to an inverter, to transmit renewed energy from one to the other.  T

 The inverter changes the solar power from direct current (DC) to alternating current (AC) that can be used in your home.

 There are also solar thermal systems available, all of which capture the heat from the sun, rather than turning it into electrical power. 

The key point is that solar panels can harness the sun’s energy and convert it into usable power to run appliances, lighting, and heating/cooling systems in a home. This solar energy can replace electricity from the utility grid.

Renewable Energy

Transitioning to renewable energy sources like solar power can greatly reduce your carbon footprint. Solar energy decreases the need to burn fossil fuels to generate electricity. Relying less on non-renewable sources for your power needs contributes to a more sustainable future. 

Can You Run a Heat Pump On Solar? Yes 

A solar heat pump combines solar panels with an integrated heat pump system to create a combined solution for your home’s heating or cooling needs. This integrated system harnesses the sun’s energy to power a heat pump that warms or cools your space, significantly reducing your energy consumption.

But beyond this simple benefit, there are also plenty of others to enjoy, such as:

Energy Consumption and Efficiency

Using solar power to operate your heat pump can significantly reduce the energy required to heat or cool your home. This reduction in energy demand results in a lower energy bill and decreased reliance on fossil fuels. Some heat pump systems are designed to store solar energy, ensuring optimal operations during low-light conditions or at night.

Installation and Upfront Costs

Installing solar panels and a heat pump system can initially be expensive. However, this upfront cost can significantly reduce your electricity bill in the long run. 

With solar panels installed, the natural price reduction from using less electricity and total metering incentives from utility companies will contribute to lessening your expenses.

Saving Money and the Environment

You can save money and reduce your building’s carbon footprint by choosing to power a heat pump with solar energy through Woden Valley Plumbing & Gasfitting. This serves as a good alternative to other greener solutions like gas to electric appliance changeover.

To do this, we’ll switch you over to this combined solution so that you’re able to effectively reduce your dependence on non-renewable resources and decrease your carbon footprint.

Feasibility of Running Heat Pumps on Solar

The number of solar panels needed to power a heat pump can vary considerably based on the heat pump’s power requirements and efficiency rating. 

As a general guideline:

  • For a small, energy efficient air source heat pump (2-3 kW rating), you may need as few as 5-10 solar panels. 
  • For a medium sized air source heat pump (3-6 kW rating), 10-20 solar panels are typically sufficient. 
  • Larger capacity or less efficient heat pumps (6-10 kW) may require 20-32 solar panels to meet power needs. 
  • Ground source and hot water heat pumps often need fewer panels than comparable air source units.

The optimal solar array size also depends on factors like your climate, energy use patterns, and whether you add battery storage

Consulting a solar installer is recommended to properly size a system to match your specific heat pump, and our team can give you a few pointers to get started. But in general, between 5-32 panels can effectively power most residential heat pump systems.

Factors to Consider

Before powering your heat pump with solar energy, consider factors like roof size, your property’s energy requirements, the local climate, energy efficiency, and any potential installation constraints. 

Considering these aspects, you can determine whether running a heat pump on solar energy is a viable solution for your home or business.

Key Takeaway

Transitioning to solar power for your heat pump provides significant financial and environmental perks. By harnessing the sun’s energy, solar-assisted heat pumps offer an eco-friendly and efficient heating and cooling solution.


  • Solar panels collect sunlight during the day to power the heat pump system, reducing reliance on fossil fuel-generated electricity.
  • The number of solar panels needed depends on factors like your climate, energy use, and heat pump size/efficiency.
  • On average, 5-32 solar panels can effectively power a residential heat pump unit.
  • Solar-powered heat pumps lower utility bills and carbon emissions while protecting against rising rates.
  • This switch demonstrates a commitment to clean energy and reducing your carbon footprint.


Ready to go solar for your heat pump system? Contact us to see how we can make this solution suit your lifestyle and budget needs. 


We’ll assess your property and determine the feasibility of installing a solar-assisted heat pump for your home. Take advantage of renewable solar power for an earth-friendly heating and cooling solution that’s also gentle on the wallet.