By Vic Johnson of Johnson Design Partnership, Low Town, Bridgnorth A few of our clients are currently very interested in installing eco orientated heating or electricity generation devices into their homes. It’s an excellent idea, especially for those of us keen to ‘think green’ in terms of our homes.
However, it is worth bearing in mind that the payback on electricity generating photovoltaics still appears to be several years but solar heating pays for itself very quickly especially when you take up some of the grants that are on offer. If you have a swimming pool then there should be no question at all – get a solar heating system installed and save loads on the heating bills! I really like the way some of the solar collectors actually look, but I guess this is an acquired taste.
Average household heating bills comprise at least 70 per spent on heating rooms and heating water. Any eco-orientated householder should look at installing solar water heating as a priority – and it does require plumbing and heating experts to size, install and balance the system correctly.
The systems use radiation from the sun to heat water in a panel often sited on the roof which in turn can supply that heat as hot water or to run a central heating system If the system has been sized correctly, it can provide at least 40 to 60 per cent of all your hot water requirements throughout the year and it’s worth considering that the average domestic system reduces carbon dioxide emissions by around 400kg per year.
Some suppliers are now offering to site a photovoltaic (PV) panel next to a solar panel, which will generate electricity that can be used to power the solar heating pump. It’s all interesting stuff – and what could be better than saving money on fuel bills whilst also doing your bit to save the planet?