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FAQs

What can we help you with?

BGS & HLC Reports
Maintenance and Aftercare
Rainwater Harvesting
Underfloor Heating
Mechanical Vent Heating Recovery
Solar Heating
Ground Source Heat Pumps
Air Source Heat Pumps

Intro

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What is a BGS and why do I need it?

‘BGS’ stands for British Geological Survey. This is a calculation carried out using conductivity based on thermal geology. We need to know and understand the thermal geology of the earth beneath and surrounding your property in order to put together a system that is going to work efficiently for you. The BGS gives us a clear indication of the geology, the fabric of what’s actually in the ground. Using this alongside the Heat Loss Calculation, we’re then able to conclude exactly what is required to ensure that your system will work effectively for you.

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What is a SAP report?

SAP is a legal requirement, a type of building regulations report carried out by an architect which gives us an accurate picture of the fabric of a building - what a property is made and comprised of. SAP coordinates everything together and will be different (and therefore producing different results) depending on location and several geographical factors. We work out the ‘U values’ mentioned above based on a SAP report; so essentially the HLC itself is based on the SAP report. This makes it an essential aspect of the preparatory process.

Intro

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I’m on the RHI program. Why do I need regular maintenance?

Recent guidelines from the RHI specify that EPCs must be carried out every two years alongside regular maintenance. This means that a yearly service and two-yearly EPC check are now essential in order to retain your funding on the program. There’s a practical reason for this – as the two combined will help to keep your system up to date and running smoothly, allowing for adjustments to be made as your circumstances and environments adapt and evolve.

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What does aftercare involve?

We recommend scheduling in annual maintenance visits to keep your system in tip-top condition. During an aftercare service we’ll come out and thoroughly check the system over, running essential reports and reviews. Standard maintenance tasks are completed, such as cleaning filters out, topping up and checking glycol levels. This visit also provides us with an opportunity to check if your requirements have changed – if so, your system may need to be altered or upgraded to better suit your needs now or in the near future.

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What are the benefits of aftercare?

There are many important benefits of regular, professional aftercare and maintenance. These include:

- The opportunity to identify and catch issues early. Regular maintenance circumvents problems and identifies where things may need to be fixed or altered to keep your system running efficiently. Finding faults sooner rather than later reduces the risk of costly issues occurring further down the line without the benefit of early intervention.
- Longevity. Your heat pump will last longer with regular service naturally – when you look after something properly, it is more likely to stand the test of time.
- Keep in line with current regulations. If you are benefiting from the RHI scheme, you’ll need to arrange yearly maintenance and professional aftercare to retain your funding.
- Peace of mind. You don’t need to worry about things going wrong or unexpected bills – as your system will be in safe hands.

To tell if Rainwater Harvesting is right for you, there are a few key questions to consider:

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Question Rain

Answer Please note the FAQ for rain water harvesting are to follow. Please re-visit our website soon for a update.

To tell if Underfloor Heating is right for you, 
there are a few key questions to consider:

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Is an underfloor heating system right for me?

Underfloor heating systems can be installed within almost any home – new or old – and they work well with a variety of heating systems both traditional and renewable. It’s worth bearing in mind that to be fully efficient and to produce the cost-saving benefits in the long-term, an underfloor system must be fitted and installed correctly in conjunction with your boiler or heating facility. Installing underfloor heating throughout your property as a replacement for a traditional heating system also poses a substantial investment, so you’ll need to take into account your energy usage, potential savings and projected returns – however this is something we can assist you with when we carry out our initial calculations on your property.

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Costs, maintenance and timescales

The completion time for an underfloor heating project really is dependent on the size of the property in question and the amount of rooms which are going to be adapted - therefore it’s difficult to predict an exact timeframe or cost for completion. Maintenance for underfloor heating is minimal and involves checking the pipes and connections are all working well and don’t need any replacements or cleaning. A yearly service and inspection should be carried out to ensure that everything is functioning properly and that maximum efficiency is maintained all year round. All Groundtherm installations are covered by our ten year insurance backed workmanship guarantee.

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What’s the process?

Firstly we will visit you and assess your requirements in line with your property’s composition and current energy efficiency. It’s important that when making a decision you are fully informed and know that the option you choose is right for you – that it helps you to achieve your objectives, whether that’s to reduce your carbon emissions or save money on your heating bills. We recommend that you consider a variety of options before making a final choice – all of which we can talk you through to assess the benefits and weigh up the pros and cons in line with your end goals.

To tell if Mechanical Vent Heating Recovery is right for you, 
there are a few key questions to consider:

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Is an MVHR system right for me?

These intelligent systems can be fitted into any home – mostly they are incorporated into new builds and commercial projects but can also be easily retrofitted into older properties. The benefits can be seen in virtually any property – and health-wise anybody can see the improvement a higher quality of air brings, making it an especially worthwhile investment for homes lived in by the elderly or very young. Now most new homes are built with MVHR installed as standard to increase energy efficiency and reduce excess carbon emissions caused by overworked central heating systems.

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Costs, maintenance and timescales

MVHR systems take around two to three weeks to install on average. They can be used straight away following installation and you should see a beneficial effect almost immediately. The system will need to be serviced periodically to ensure that is running at optimal level – this is a quick assessment which involves cleaning fans and vents and checking that filters are clear and operating correctly. As with all our installations, our MVHR systems are covered by our ten year insurance-backed workmanship warranty.

To tell if Solar Heating is right for you, 
there are a few key questions to consider:

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Is Solar Heating for me?

As with all the renewable energy installations we offer, we always make sure that we conduct a full consultation with you to ascertain what your needs are and whether the proposed system is a good fit for you. However there are a few things you can consider before making a decision to switch to Solar Thermal energy, such as space (do you have enough space for the panels and for a newer, larger hot water cylinder?), sunlight (although Solar Thermal panels are designed to run even without direct sunlight, for optimal results they do need to be placed preferably facing the South or West) and compatibility (does your current heating system have the necessary capacity to run with a Solar Thermal source?). These are all questions we can answer during a consultation – but it’s always best to be aware of the possible issues and extra costs involved when embarking upon a renewable energy installation. You will also need to think about the state of your roof and the materials used in its construction – slate or tile are commonly suitable but a thorough roof survey will need to be conducted to ensure that the roof will take the extra load placed upon it by snow and wind with the addition of the solar panels. In retrofit situations you may need a new hot water cylinder if you are not able to use your existing hot water system or find that it will not be efficient enough to meet your energy saving goals.

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Costs, maintenance and timescales

On average, a Solar Heating installation costs around £3,000 including the cylinder and takes 3 days to complete as a ballpark. This could vary dramatically of course, based on the type and size of the property at hand. One of the huge benefits of a Solar Heating system is very low maintenance costs – plus with Groundtherm you receive an insurance-backed ten year workmanship guarantee on all installations we carry out.

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What’s the process?

Initially we come out and complete a thorough assessment of your home’s energy consumption and current usage, taking into account any seasonal differentiation. Additionally a roof survey will need to be carried out to determine its wind and snow load, ensuring that panels can safely be fitted and your roof can take the weight of the panels in all eventualities. We discuss your goals at length and learn more about what you are looking to get out of the installation – as this will help us to determine whether Solar Thermal is right for you. We also need to check that your property is suitable for the installation of solar panels – ensuring compatibility with existing systems and assessing whether additional systems may need to be installed to help you to reach your energy-saving and cost-reducing goals. Once you decide to go ahead, we carry out the necessary checks and certifications and go ahead with the installation, which usually takes around 3 days to complete.

To tell if a Ground Source Heat Pump is right for you, 
there are a few key questions to consider:

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How do Ground Source Heat Pumps work?

Ground Source Heat Pumps use pipes buried in the garden to extract heat from the ground. This is usually used to heat water for radiators or underfloor heating systems. It can also be used to heat water for domestic use.

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Is a Ground Source Heat Pump right for me?

There are a number of factors to take into account when you are considering installing any renewable energy system into your home. During our initial consultation, we will discuss the options with you and assess your property and requirements thoroughly in order to give you the best possible advice. Prior to this however, to determine whether a ground source heat pump is right for you and is suitable for your home there are a few key questions to consider:

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Is your garden suitable for a ground loop?

The size of the groundloop is dependent on the size of the property. The ground needs to be suitable for digging a trench or a borehole and accessible to drilling machinery. We will conduct a thorough geological survey before work begins to determine whether the land surrounding your property is suitable for a ground loop installation.

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Is your home well insulated?

Since ground source heat pumps produce a lower temperature heat than traditional boilers, it's essential that your home is insulated and draught proofed well for the heating system to be effective. It could also make the system cheaper and smaller.

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What fuel will you be replacing?

If you're replacing an electric, oil, Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) or coal heating system, a ground source heating system will pay for itself quite quickly. If you're replacing a more efficient gas heating system, your savings will be smaller.

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What type of heating system do you want?

Underfloor heating systems or warm air heating will work much better than radiator-based systems. Ground Source Heat Pumps can be retrofit to work with an existing system – but in order to get optimal energy-saving potential from them we always recommend considering a newer, more efficient facility.

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Is the system intended for a new development?

Combining the installation with other building work can reduce the cost of installing the system – so during a new build it’s worth enquiring about the installation of a Ground Source Heat Pump early on so that it can be easily incorporated with other work.

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Costs, maintenance and timescales

The cost depends on the size of your property, energy usage, requirements and any added extras needed – for example, you may want to replace your old radiator heating system simultaneously which would of course add to the overall outlay. For tailored information or a bespoke quote please contact us.

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What’s the process?

Firstly it’s important for us to sit with you and take into account your views and objectives when embarking on switching to a renewable energy source. We will explain the options and the process to ensure this is the best medium for you before designing a solution which fits your requirements perfectly.

To tell if an air source heat pump is right for you, 
there are a few key questions to consider:

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How does it work?

Very much in the same way to Ground Source Heat Pumps – except no boreholes are needed- except no boreholes are need. The Air Source Pump draws in air from the surrounding environment and absorbs heat from the air. This heat can then be used to heat water for radiators or underfloor heating systems, or to warm the air in your home.

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Do you have somewhere to put it?

You'll need a place outside your house where a unit can be fitted to a wall or placed on the ground. It will need plenty of space around it to get a good flow of air. If you’re unsure, we will assess this for you during our initial consultation with you and ensure your property’s suitability before work commences.

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Is your home well insulated?

Since Air Source Heat Pumps produce lower temperature than traditional boilers, it's essential that your home is insulated and draught proofed well for the heating systems to be effective. We will complete a thorough audit of your home prior to your decision to work out the amount of energy wastage and usage and asses whether investing in better insulation might improve the efficiency of your new system.

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What fuel will you be replacing?

The system will pay for itself much more quickly if its replacing an electricity, oil, Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) or coal heating system than a traditional gas boiler. Its important to consider the projected returns and weigh them up against your expectations.

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What type of heating system do you want?

Air Source Heat Pumps are much better at powering under floor heating systems or warm air heating than radiator-based systems- so its well worth considering whether you should replace your old radiator systems. When investing in a renewable energy source to gain the full benefit of the air source installation.

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Is the system intended for a new development?

Combining the installation with other building work can reduce the cost of installing the system-but Air Source Systems are a great option for retrofits or existing modern buildings because of their less intrusive nature and easy of fitting.

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Costs, maintenance and timescales

The installation time for Air Source systems is around a week. Maintenance and upkeep costs are fairly low - in line with the manufacturer’s seven year warranty covering the pump we will carry out an annual service to ensure that the pump and system it supplies are working efficiently and check the fluid levels in the system.

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What’s the process?

Following an initial conversation we complete a full assessment of your property, including a heat loss calculation and performance certificate to ascertain your current energy usage and efficiency. This helps us to estimate how much energy (and money) you could save through the implementation of an Air Source system. We then send a quotation based on our findings. Once you decide to go ahead, we simply fit the pump and switch your system over from your old energy supply to the Air Source.
For more information on Air Source Heat Pumps, please contact us.

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