What is Whole House Renewables?

At Your Energy Your Way, we think that creating a low carbon home is so important it shouldn’t be done in a piecemeal way. We give advice on what renewables technologies are best for your home and budget. Here is an example from one of our customers.

The owner of this Georgian 6 bed house was keen to remove himself from the gas grid and make his home a show home for renewables.  The particular challenges we faced were:

  • the age of the property
  • the fact that it bordered a conservation area
  • the unsuitability of the house roof for PV

The first step was to check that the customer had carried out all suitable insulation measures.  This included double glazing throughout, loft insulation and draught proofing.  Despite this, the house still had a heat loss of 24kW at a design temperature of -2 degrees outside.  We discovered this through a room by room heat loss survey.

Our survey identified three things:

  1. The radiators were to small for a low temperature heat pump (running at max 50 degrees)
  2. The radiators needed upgrading even for a high temp heat pump (running at 60 degrees)
  3. We would need two single phase heat pumps to meet the heat load

As a result, our first step was to upgrade the majority of the radiators in the house, including some curved bay window radiators.

Solar PV and battery

Given the electrical demands of this system and the fact that the customer owned 2 electric vehicles, we suggested solar PV and a battery to help meet this demand.  The house roof was not suitable, so we installed the maximum solar PV installation (without incurring shading) on the garage roof as shown.

We used 8 x LG Neon All Black Mono PV panels, one of the highest output all black panels on the market at the time.

We also installed a battery  to enable the solar PV to be used outside of daylight hours. We couldn’t install a hybrid battery charger/inverter, so we put in a Solis Dual 2500 inverter in the garage (putting the lower placed string on a separate MPPT) and a GivEnergy 2.6kWhr battery in the house near the fuseboard.

Solar Thermal

There was a further south facing roof space available, but due to the conservation area surrounding the property the customer didn’t want any panels sitting higher than the level of the roof.  Therefore we suggested a Vitasol-300 3.03m2 evacuated tube solar thermal panel.  Solar thermal panels work well at all angles and from March to September will be able to provide the majority of the hot water for the customer reducing reliance on the heat pump and the electricity supply.

Heat Pumps

To meet the heat load of the property we installed 2 x Hitachi 6HP high temp heat pumps, each with an output of 14kW at design temperature.  Planning permission had to be granted for the install because 2 heat pumps are not permitted under permitted development.

EV Chargers

Finally, we installed 1 x 7kW EV Charger to charge the customer’s EV and 1 x 3kW EV charger to charge the customer’s plug in hybrid car with a much smaller battery.