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Heating Sources

At Eco Power & Lighting Ltd, our goal is to provide you with a domestic or commercial ground source heat pumps that meets your needs from design through installation and on to finished product, with as little disruption to you as possible.

Heating sources provide clients with heating and hot water generated from the ground (GSHP), Water (WSHP) or the Air (ASHP). Battery storage can be used in conjunction to store and use energy at selected times of the day. Solar PV can also be used in conjunction with heat pumps.

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Ground source heat pumps

Ground heating systems absorb heat from the ground at low temperatures into a fluid inside a loop of pipe (a ground loop) buried underground. The fluid then passes through a compressor that raises it to a higher temperature, which can then heat water for the heating and hot water circuits in the house. The cooled ground-loop fluid passes back into the ground where it absorbs further energy from the ground in a continuous process as long as heating is required.

Normally the loop is laid flat or coiled in trenches about 2m deep, but if there is not enough space in your garden you can install a vertical loop down into the ground to a depth of up to 100m for a typical domestic home. Heat pumps have some impact of the environment as they need electricity to run, but the heat they extract from the ground, the air or water in constantly being renewed naturally.

The advantages of ground source heat pumps

  • Ground source heat pumps save money; they are much cheaper to run than direct electric heating systems and cheaper than oil and gas boilers.
  • Fully automated, they demand less work than biomass boilers.
  • Heat pumps save space and there are no storage requirements. No need to manage fuel deliveries.
  • Heat pumps are safe. There is no combustion involved and no emission of potentially dangerous gases.
  • Heat pumps require less maintenance than combustion-based heating systems and have a longer life span.
  • The ground heat exchanger element has a design life of 100 years.
  • Heat pumps save carbon emissions unlike burning oil, gas, LPG or biomass.
  • Heat pumps are out of sight and require no planning permission.
  • Heat pumps provide cooling in summer and heating in winter.
  • A well-designed heat pump is likely to increase the sale value of your property.
  • Suitable ground heating for houses and commercial premises.

Water Source Heat Pumps

The heat pump in a ground source heat pump system is identical to that for a water source heat pump system. The difference is that a GSHP receives water through a closed loop of pipes buried in the ground, which the pipes absorb heating sources from; a WSHP receives water through pipes that absorb heat from contact with water. The water may be from a river, open water or even the sea in the case of a ‘marine source heat pump’. Usually a closed loop is used. However, if clean water is available from an aquifer it may be possible for an open loop to be used. In this case water is drawn from the aquifer and passed directly through pipes into the heat pump and discharged back to the aquifer though another pipe.

An advantage of a WSHP is that a constant temperature will be available to the WSHP even if a large amount of heat is required, provided the WSHP is heat exchanging with a large body of water.

Air Source Heat Pumps

Air source heat pumps (ASHPs) absorb heating sources from the outside air. This heat can then be used to heat radiators, underfloor heating systems, or warm air convectors and hot water in your home. Different from a ground source heat pump, an air source heat pump extracts heat from the outside air in the same way that a fridge extracts heat from its inside. It can get heat from the air even when the temperature is as low as -15° C.

Heat pumps have some impact on the environment as they need electricity to run, but the heat they extract from the ground, air, or water is constantly being renewed naturally. Heat from the air is absorbed at low temperature into a fluid. This fluid then passes through a compressor where its temperature is increased and transfers its higher temperature heat to the heating and hot water circuits of the house.

There are two main types of air source heat pump systems:

An air-to-water system distributes heat via your wet central heating system. Heat pumps work much more efficiently at a lower temperature than a standard boiler system would. This makes them more suitable for underfloor heating systems or larger radiators, which give out heat at lower temperatures over longer periods of time. An air-to-air system produces warm air which is circulated by fans to heat your home. They are unlikely to provide you with hot water as well.