However, sales of gas and oil heating systems are also growing, as current figures from the German Heating Industry Association show. Overall, the market grew by 38% to 306,500 new heaters. However, the German Renewable Energy Association warns against postponing the requirements of the country’s Building Energy Act until 2027.
The debate on building energy and the proposed ban on new oil and gas heating systems in the near future seem to have sparked a heating modernization boom in Germany.
According to the German Heat Industry Association (BDH), sales figures in the heat generator market increased by 38 percent to 306,500 systems in the first quarter of 2023. Heat pumps were in particularly high demand. The sale of 96,500 copies means a 111% increase compared to the first quarter of 2022.
However, gas heaters got more buyers than in the same period last year and are clearly ahead of heat pumps. BDH grew 14 percent to 168,000 systems after an 8 percent decline in the first quarter of 2022, largely due to the difficult gas supply situation following the outbreak of the war in Ukraine.
Growth in new oil heating systems was even stronger, with sales doubling to 21,500 systems compared to the corresponding quarter of the previous year. However, their market share in the total heat market is rather marginal, 7%. According to the BDH, the importance of pellet heating systems has decreased and sales have fallen by 11%, which the association attributes to the massive reduction in state subsidies from August 2022.
“We have a positive attitude towards the modernization trend of heating technology,” said BDH CEO Markus Staudt. “It is good for the climate, the German economy and of course also for the citizens, as modern and efficient heating systems reduce the need for energy.”
However, the association repeated its criticism of the support cuts for biomass heating systems and expressed its concern about the imbalance in growth.
– Even though heat pump manufacturers are working at the limit, biomass still has a lot of potential, which as a climate-neutral and renewable energy source can also contribute significantly to the transfer of heat, Staudt emphasized.
In view of the further development of the market, BDH assumes that unstable energy prices are the main factor in the growth of demand. However, high inflation and rising interest rates can weaken consumers’ purchasing power. The slump in the new construction market is another obstacle. Overall, however, the association expects heat sales to continue to grow by well over 10%. The share of heat pumps is probably the largest.
BEE: The Building Energy Act must not be put on the back burner
Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s government also approved the draft Building Energy Act on Monday, but it has not yet been approved. The federal states will discuss the matter on Friday and are likely to propose postponing the legal requirements until 2027. The German Association for Renewable Energy (BEE) is critical of the matter.
“Proposals to delay the law’s entry into force until 2027 will prevent planning security for businesses that are now investing on a large scale and allow people to believe they can carry on as before,” said BEE President Simone Peter. “However, after the European Parliament, the Council has just approved a comprehensive EU-level amendment to the Emissions Trading Directive, which is expected to increase the price of fossil fuels. Climate protection and international competition for climate protection technologies do not wait, as the Viessmann contract shows, Peter continued.
BEE believes that the reform of the Building Energy Act is long overdue. It must now be implemented and not postponed, but socially balanced, it claims. For example, the additional costs should be fairly shared between the tenants and the landlord. – With a few fixes, such as the full range of domestic renewable energy sources and a better social cushion, it will become cheaper and more efficient for everyone in the long run. This is the only way to get the necessary approval for the operations,” said Peter.