April 30th, 2018
Domestic air conditioning

The construction of a three storey detached house in Wiltshire has been completed and relies entirely on renewables for its hot water, heating and air conditioning requirements. It also features an underfloor heating system with guaranteed compatibility with a Daikin Altherma low temperature air source heat pump.

The property owner was committed to renewables and had already stipulated to his architect and building contractor that renewables should exclusively be the energy sources for the property. He took time out to visit many exhibitions to assess alternative renewables including ground source heat pumps and biomass, but the cost of installation, the long payback periods and falling government Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) financial incentives for biomass were not acceptable. Similarly, wind turbines and hybrid solutions using a combination of heat pumps were not economically viable.

However, the appointed plumbing contractor had found out about Daikin Altherma Air Source Heat Pumps (ASHPs) from his usual plumbers’ merchant and could conveniently order and arrange delivery of all the products for the project, sourced from IBD.

A further key requirement for the project was identified as underfloor heating in order to dispense with traditional radiators which the owner found visually unattractive and too restrictive in terms of room layouts. He preferred the invisibility, comfort and performance of underfloor heating and so IBD’s Envirotube underfloor heating system (UFH) was specified. It has guaranteed compatibility with Daikin Altherma Air Source Heat Pumps and the combination proved to be exactly the solution required. Envirotube UFH is ideal for use with Daikin Altherma low temperature heat pumps due to the energy efficiencies of having a thermal mass in the floor maintained by low flow temperatures from the heat pump.

The completed installation at the property consists of an MCS scheme approved Daikin Altherma Low Temperature (LT) 16kW Split ASHP with external and internal units as well as a 300 litre hot water cylinder. Solar voltaic panels have been installed on the roof for electricity generation and Envirotube UFH features in the screeded concrete floors on the two lower levels of the property.

The Daikin Altherma Low Temperature (LT) Split is a highly versatile and efficient air-to-water heat pump for a new, low energy home such as this. The system includes a space saving, wall-hung indoor unit and the hot water cylinder, whilst the quiet outdoor has been conveniently and unobtrusively installed at the front of the property. It offers a high efficiency COP and typical annual efficiencies of up to 300%. Reliable operation is assured even should temperatures drop to a highly unlikely -25°C outside. Inside the property the controller is set to the desired 21°C but can be easily adjusted through the room controller as required.

Making sure the different technologies complemented each other was achieved by IBD within its system design proposals including heat loss calculations, room sizing, assessment of the performance characteristics of the heat pump and solar voltaic panels in relation to heating and domestic hot water requirements. Full warranties were also provided for all products.

For the project, the owner was able to benefit from the RHI incentive scheme, but this was only possible with the assistance of IBD through its Total MCS Solutions package for installers. This meant that they not only provided the plumbing installer with detailed drawings and schematics for the various elements of the installation, but were also able to sign-off and register the installation with the Microgeneration Certification Scheme – a necessity for the financial rewards of the RHI to be obtained.