Eco Systems & Renewable Energy Solutions
Solar Panels harness the power in both direct and diffuse sunlight and convert the energy to heat for the production of hot water for the home.
Solar panels have been designed as a complement to existing heating systems which use a store of hot water in a cylinder. The existing cylinder is exchanged for a cylinder with two heat exchanger coils; one from the boiler in the property and a second from the solar panels.
Solar Thermal is a clean and highly efficient means of using renewable energy from the sun to provide the hot water used in the home. The basic principle is easy to understand. If you unroll a garden hose on the ground and leave it exposed to the radiant heat of the sun, in a short time the water in the hose will become warm. Solar thermal collectors work in very much the same way, only more efficiently. Usually, but not exclusively, roof mounted solar collectors will be connected to one of the coils of a twin-coil cylinder using a sealed circuit containing a special glycol/water solution. This fluid not only withstands the high temperatures in excess of 200ºC on a summer day but also will not freeze in temperatures down to –25ºC. The pump in the system circulates the heated fluid from the panel to the cylinder where the heat is transferred to the stored water through the lower coil.
Solar thermal technology is the most reliable, efficient and accessible form of renewable energy available today and when combined with a high-efficiency Condensing Boiler, annual fuel bills can be dramatically reduced. As solar water heating depends on radiation, not direct sunlight, it even works on dull days. Installing Solar collectors can help reduce heating bills by providing up to 70% of a household's domestic hot water requirements per annum. Solar thermal is also great for the environment, as it has no emissions and is assured for the next 4 billion years.
Rainwater Harvesting system diagramWith climate change now a reality rather than a speculated possibility, the demand on water resources has gone up, whilst the amount of water available for supply has gone down. Forth coming regulatory changes will mean that over 90% of UK homes will have their water usage metered, making consumers more and more aware of how expensive the commodity of “common or garden” water has become. Anders Heating have established links with WPL in order to supply the demand and requirements to our customers.
From a simple, above ground water butt to below ground storage tanks and comprehensive, automatic recycling systems, Anders Heating use WPL’s Garantia range of rain harvesting products which provide versatile, economic and ecological solutions and give our customers the ability to freely collect water and use it with out feeling guilty.
This water can be utilised for plants and lawns, for washing cars, washing machines and toilets.
Under Floor Heating
Underfloor heating is the most comfortable and efficient way to heat a house and offers many benefits - comfort, economy, freedom and health - over more conventional methods of heat distribution.
Geothermal energy refers to heat energy stored in the ground of the earth. Heat is supplied to the ground from two sources namely the hot core of the planet and the sun.
Geothermal / Ground Source Heat Pumps
Ground source heat pumps, also known as geothermal heat pumps, are used for space heating and cooling, as well as water heating. They operate on the fact that the earth beneath the surface remains at a constant temperature throughout the year, and that the ground acts as a heat source in winter and a heat sink in summer. They can be used in both residential and commercial or institutional buildings.
How it works
The earth’s surface acts as a huge solar collector, absorbing radiation from the sun. In this country the ground maintains a constant temperature between 11oC and 13oC, several metres below the surface. Geothermal Heat Pumps take advantage of this by transferring the heat stored in the earth or in ground water to buildings in winter and the opposite in summer for cooling. Through compression, heat pumps can ‘pump up’ heat at low temperature and release it at a higher temperature so that it may be used again. A heat pump looks similar and can perform the same functions as a conventional gas or oil boiler, i.e. space heating and sanitary hot water production. For every unit of electricity used to operate the heat pump, up to four units of heat are generated. Therefore for every unit of electricity used to pump the heat, 3-4 units of heat are produced.
Installation in the Home
The system has three main components: a series of pipes in the ground, a heat pump and a heat distribution system. Lengths of plastic pipes are buried in the ground, either in a borehole or a horizontal trench near the building to be heated or cooled. Fluid, normally water with anti-freeze, absorbs or emits heat to the soil, depending on whether the ambient air is colder or warmer than the soil. In winter, the heat pump removes the heat from the fluid, upgrades it to a higher temperature for use in the building, typically in under-floor heating. A distribution system is needed to transfer the heat extracted from the ground by the heat pump.The heat is often in the form of hot water and is distributed around the dwelling by radiators or a low temperature underfloor heating system.
Payback and Maintenance
The initial capital costs of installing a Geothermal Heat Pump system is usually higher than other conventional central heating systems. However, under the new grant schemes, there are now grants available which will reduce initial costs significantly. A large proportion of the outlay will be for the purchase and installation of the ground collector. The system is among the most energy efficient and cost effective heating and cooling systems available.
Typically, four units of heat are generated for every unit of electricity used by the heat pump to deliver it, and the payback is typically about 8- 10 years. The life expectancy of the system is around 20 years. Once installed a heat pump requires very little maintenance and anyone installing a heat pump should speak with their installer regarding a maintenance agreement.