Case Study 1

The problem: The clients lived in an old country house, which was approximately 250 years old, with an old-fashioned oil burner fuelling their heating system. The current heating system was very energy inefficient, and the oil-fired boiler was in need of some serious updating as it was over ten years old.The clients wanted a solution that would not devalue their house but would allow them to be more environmentally aware.

The clients had already looked at the possibility of converting to a gas heating system, and a few other options, but decided that none of them was quite the solution they were looking for. That is when they came across some information about Air Source Heat Pumps and agreed that this option merited further investigation. They also spoke to a local estate agent regarding the value of their property with its current system, and how the fitting of an air source heat pump might affect the market value. The response they got was that it would be beneficial to consider such an alteration to the property.

The solution: The property in question was large and old. However, the clients had already made some good progress in adding some eco-friendly solutions in order to reduce their energy bills. The roof area had been fitted with solar panels, and the clients were keen to adopt further renewable energy solutions where possible in the home.

The property also benefitted from a fully insulated loft space. The work had been carried out a couple of years previously and being an older property, the walls were very thick, which aided in the insulation of the house. The clients had done what they could to improve the EPC rating of the house. Still, with the future resale value of the house in the forefront of their minds, they were looking to ensure that whatever solution they chose added value to the property while giving them a better EPC rating.

Air source heat pumps are an excellent choice when it comes to heating solutions, but represent a significant financial decision for any householder. There can also be a lot of work involved which can sometimes be a factor in the decision. Having done their research, the clients decided that heat pumps were the way forward and contacted a couple of companies to get quotes. They decided they wanted to go with a company that was highly experienced when it comes to installing heat pumps and had plenty of knowledge about the complexities of older properties.

The fitting: Because the property was large and old, a full refit of the underfloor piping was required. Once the job had begun, the piping was found to be substantially more inadequate than had been previously estimated. With the existing welding almost washed away, the new system could easily have caused a burst. New piping was fitted on schedule to ensure that there was minimal disruption to the client. The pumps were then fitted to complete the install.

The verdict: The clients found the new system took a little getting used to. There were no radiators to touch to check the temperature of the room, but an ambient temperature which keeps the home consistently warm. However, the thermostat was set up to help by ensuring that the house was kept at a temperature that was energy-efficient, ensuring neither energy nor heat was wasted unnecessarily. The client has noted the consistent temperature, and they are finding it makes heating their home a much simpler process. Thanks to the Renewable Heat Incentive scheme, the clients will receive quarterly payments which will offset the cost of the installation.

The product: Dual-unit Air Source Heat Pump

Case Study 2

The problem: The clients were currently running their household using an oil boiler. However, they were finding that their bills were on the expensive side and had decided that it was time to look at other alternatives. They wanted to reduce their bills while also improving the energy rating of their home. Their current oil boiler was nearing the 10-year mark, which meant that it was already rather an inefficient system and was costing the clients more to run than it should have. The cost of oil, which is not cheap, was also adding to their ever-increasing heating bills, and the costs associated with fixing the boiler were also becoming more costly.

The solution: After completing a significant amount of online research, the clients decided that a renewable energy source was precisely what they needed to solve the problems that they had.

A visit to the property offered a chance for us to take a good look at the current system and advise them on the costs involved in the installation of an Air Source Pump System. It was also the ideal time to discuss the reduction in emissions that could be had and the reduced costs that would be achievable for them in the long run with a new system. The clients had done their research thoroughly and were aware that they would be looking at some significant costs for installation, whether they decided to replace the boiler with a new one or change to a completely different system. Detailed discussions meant we were able to advise them of the savings and income that they would be able to make over time that would help them to pay for the system. This was something that they hadn’t been completely aware of from their research.

While the clients had no plans to put their property on the market in the foreseeable future, they were aware that as people become more conscious of their energy consumption and that as homeowners it was essential to make these changes now. At the moment, many potential buyers are very conscious of just how vital an excellent energy efficiency rating is for a home and, in some cases, it has been known to make or break a sale.

The savings: Upon completion of a comprehensive assessment of the house, we were able to tell the clients that fitting an Air Source Pump System in their home might be able to save them as much as £850 in fuel costs over a period of seven years. In addition, the possible income from the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) – a government-run scheme – could be as much as £6788 for the same 7-year period. The clients also benefit from knowing that should they decide to put the property up for sale at some point in the future, they will benefit from having a rating for energy efficiency that is 100% in the green zone.

The installation: The installation was a relatively simple one, with a smooth turnaround that ensured that there was minimal disturbance to the everyday routines of the household throughout the process.

The verdict: Once the system had been put in place and the clients had had a while to get used to it, they noticed that there was a continual, consistent temperature throughout the property. They didn’t need to remember to adjust the thermostat because the system uses the outside temperature to adjust automatically. While this can take a little getting used to, it could be considered another benefit of the system.

The product: Single Air Source Heat Pump

Case Study 3

The problem: The clients were using an outdated system to run both their hot water and heating. This, combined with increasing fuel prices meant that their fuel bills were escalating. They were concerned about the amount of money they were spending and the fact that it was continuing to increase, and were looking for a more affordable solution. They also had some concerns about the energy performance rating of their property and were looking to take steps to reduce it before it got too high. They were ready to consider looking at renewable heating sources with a view to changing their current system.

The solution: The client had been actively researching ways in which they might be able to reduce their hot water and heating bills, and also improve their energy rating. Their research had led them to the conclusion that a renewable energy solution, in particular an Air Source Heat Pump, could be of benefit to them. They contacted us for a free site survey which allowed us to recommend the most appropriate size of system for their property and also to discuss with them the potential savings they could make as well. We also gave them information about the RHI payments they could expect to receive following the installation of the new system

The savings: The initial survey of the client’s home suggested that an Air Source Heat Pump would be the best way forward. The clients were delighted to learn that this heating source would guarantee them savings on their fuel of up to £1000 each year. The renewable energy solution provided by an ASHP would also qualify them for the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) Scheme – this is a government-run scheme that allows households to earn an income as a way of saying “thank you” for taking the step to move from more conventional methods of heating their hot water and homes and changing to something more renewable. The payments from the government are made over a period of 7 years. The RHI payments when added to the savings to be made on energy meant that the clients would gain approximately £8500 over the period of 7 years. This went a long way towards dispelling any fears that the client had about the cost of the new system and its affordability.

The installation: The possibility of a significant amount of disruption during the installation process was a big concern for these clients. When they were advised that the installation certainly wasn’t going to be a small job, it was clear just how concerned they were. However, we were able to put their minds at rest and the installation was done with as little disruption to their daily routine as possible. Keeping the lines of communication open, we were able to work on allaying any fears that they initially had about their installation. The clients were very happy with the installation process and mentioned that they “couldn’t have expected a better service”.

The verdict: Now that the new system has been fully installed and the clients have had a little time to get used to it they have noticed a definite improvement. One of the things they’ve commented on is that their house is now heated to a much more consistent temperature. They are not worried about any wasted heat and they don’t have to remember to adjust their thermostat; this is all done automatically by the system using the external temperatures.

The product: Single Air Source Heat Pump Unit

Case Study 4

The problem: These clients live in a larger property that dates back to the beginning of the last century. As a household, it was very important to them that they were able to reduce the costs of their energy. Their current heating and hot water solution consisted of an old oil boiler which was proving to be far too expensive. With the home and the boiler both becoming older, they were very aware that the costs of repairing the boiler would soon amount to more than a replacement. This meant that they felt it would be important to look at all their option and weigh up the cost of a new boiler or a more renewable energy source. Having already taken their first step towards being more energy efficient with a Solar PV system that was just a few years old, the clients were open to the idea of taking their renewable energy sources to the next level with the possibility of installing an Air Source Heat Pump. The solar solution had been installed at the property in order to improve the EPC rating which, given the age of the house, was rather low. The clients were hoping to improve this further with the addition of a new heating solution. The value of the house was not the immediate priority, but reducing the fuel bills was very high on the agenda.

The solution: The clients were no strangers to renewable energy sources, so the idea of fitting an Air Source Heat Pump was very appealing. They wanted to ensure that they used a trusted installer who would be able to give them an affordable quotation, so they contacted us to do an assessment. They chose us because their research showed that we were used to working on similar properties, and they felt this meant we would be able to give them the best advice based on experience. They also knew that the solar panels that they had already installed should be able to provide them with enough power for the pumps to work.

We carried out an inspection of the property, making notes regarding the client’s heating and hot water requirements, and were then able to use this information to provide the most appropriate system recommendations and, of course, a quote. The initial price of installation can come as a shock to most homeowners, but we were able to discuss face to face how the heat pump should be able to pay for itself. Using the new estimated EPC rating that the Air Source Heat Pump should provide for the house, we were able to show that fuel savings alone should be in the region of £1200 per year for the property. The Renewable Heat Incentive means that over the course of 7 years the client could in fact end up saving over £19,000.

Once the figures were explained to the client, who was delighted to learn just how much they could save long-term, the client gave the go ahead for the installation. They were in a position to pay for the Air Source Heat Pump upfront but knowing that they could recuperate the costs relatively quickly made it a much easier decision.

The installation: Having completed an efficient inspection of the property we were able to ensure that the installation of the ASHP was efficient and clean with a minimal disruption to the client and his family. We were able to pair the Solar PV to the new ASHP easily and everything was running smoothly very quickly.

The verdict: The family noticed the change to a consistent temperature in their home immediately and were very happy with the results.

The product: Air Source Heat Pump.

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