The Best Advice
When designing a Ground Source Heating system it is essential to observe and accomodate the requirements of the structure and the functions/needs of the users/inhabitants of that structure. This requires accurate assessment of, heating/cooling profiles over the year, i.e. seasonal, occupational, room temperature requirements, additional heat loads, e.g.. swimming pools, etc.
An illustrative analogy.
As perhaps with the choice of a car, the cost of a GSHP could well be in relation to the size of your house. A respectable detached house will require a Series 5 BMW or Jaguar investment dimension. A large country house will need a top of the range Mercedes, Bentley, or even Lamborghini sized investment.
Would you commit that much money to the relatively simple purchase, a car, without doing one or more of the following?
Looking at the brand advertising, brochures, performance specifications, model reviews etc.?
Talking to friends
Looking at the car, sitting in it, test driving it?
Are any of the activities above applicable, or even possible, with a GSHP system? Almost certainly not, unless you have a friend who has a very similar installation…. You are going to have to trust an expert
Please do not let it be a salesman, commission driven, only superficial knowledge, out for a quick sale.
Please do not let it be an “expert” who has read a couple of articles and thinks he knows it all.
Please do not let it be an expert (or company) with a good reputation in another field who thinks that his general “expertise” will carry him through.
The design, dimensioning and installation of a GSHP system is technically complex and demanding, requiring adherence to defined standards. Failure to be consistently competent throughout each stage of the process from the initial assessment to design, dimensioning and installation is a recipe for disaster.
There are many people out there who are more than willing to offer this advice and quote for projects. A significant number of these are neither qualified, nor experienced enough to do so.
Unfortunately there are many instances of installations which do not measure up to client expectations in the long term.
The old adage " you get what you pay for " applies in our industry as much, if not more, than in any other.
A GSHP heating system typically consists of a borehole array which is totally invisible after installation, this is coupled to a GSHP which is essentially a "black box". Unless you are an expert, there is very little to see that can give a reliable indication of build quality or correct dimensioning. Therefore it is essential that the design and installation process is executed by experienced and reliable people.
It is often the case that larger projects are allocated on the basis of personal or private contacts rather than a proven track record in this specialised area. Sometimes, just as mistakenly, upon the basis of a good reputation acquired in a field of expertise largely irrelevant to ground source heat pump installations.
Synergy are in the renewable energy business for the long term. We will succeed, or fail, based upon the experiences of our clients.
Therefore we are cautious in choosing our partners, be they renenewable energy materials/equipment suppliers, installers, or consultants.
We recommend the services of BBH for the design and dimensioning of larger and medium ground source heating projects. They have consistently proven to be independent, objective and impartial in advocating the best solutions for the end client.
BBH Energy Strategies is an energy and carbon consultancy and advisory service working with both industry professionals and individual property owners and in both commercial and residential sectors. Ground-source heat pump systems are a speciality with services ranging from feasibility studies through to detailed design, tender management and (sadly) troubleshooting of underperforming systems. A full range of peripheral services, such as electricity supply upgrade management, can also be provided. The company's emphasis is on the provision of high quality and pragmatic solutions and on close and clearly communicated collaboration with the client.
Contact details for BBH:
Bean Beanland BSc (Hons) ARCS
Mobile: 07393 399685
The Gardens, West Woodhay
Newbury, Berkshire RG20 0BP