Carol Titmuss looks at a property in Milton Keynes replacing oil with a heat pump

Here at Refurb Projects, we are seeing more renewable technologies being incorporated into the projects we cover and in the last year, I’ve noticed a real and tangible increase in the number of air source heat pumps that are being used as the primary source of heating and hot water, both commercially and residentially.

That’s part of the reason that the government is predicting annual sales of one million heat pumps by 2030.

In the case of homeowner, Nigel Furr, though, the consideration that a new oil boiler would also be consigning him to 10+ years of carbon-intensive heating, and a complete reliance of rising oil prices were also mitigating factors.

Nigel from Milton Keynes in Buckinghamshire has become the latest homeowner to move his property away from oil-based heating to a renewable air source heat pump.

“We are in a relatively remote part of Milton Keynes, an off-gas area, so as such, the property we moved to was heated with oil when we first moved in,” he explained.

I’ve noticed a real and tangible increase in the number of air source heat pumps

Carole Titmuss Refurb projects Carole Titmuss Editor and publisher of Refurb Projects

Word of mouth

Undertaking a property wide conversion, Nigel took his two-bed bungalow to a four-bed chalet bungalow, and decided to make the move to a renewable heating solution after the positive feedback he had received from other local homeowners who had already made the transition from oil to a heat pump.

“After talking to our neighbours, many of whom had been using oil previously, we researched air source heat pumps as a solution that was better for the environment and would also help us cut our energy costs.” said Nigel.

Following a conversation with Mitsubishi Electric, Nigel was put in contact with their Business Solutions Partner, AOS Energy Efficient Heating Systems Ltd, who suggested an Ecodan air source heat pump as a viable alternative to oil.

“Implementing Ecodan was at the centre of our bungalow build, as it offers state of the art technology which produces a consistently warm ambient temperature throughout a 201 square metre foot-print,” he added, “not only this, the green credentials mean that we expect noticeable costs savings this winter period.”

Increasing demand

AOS Energy Efficient Heating Systems Ltd has installed nearly 450 heat pumps over the last seven years and sees the number being installed increasing each year.

“Homeowners are really starting to see the benefit of air source heat pumps and the calls we receive from new leads shows the understanding of the technology and benefit behind it,” explains Lee Wildego, technical surveyor and contracts manager for AOS Energy.

“As a Mitsubishi Electric Business Solutions Partner, we are confident that their products, aftercare and back-up services are the best in the market,”

Less carbon

With no access to the gas grid, Nigel decided not to install an unsightly and carbon-intensive oil tank on his property. The 11.2kW Ultra Quiet Ecodan was therefore the perfect alternative, with low maintenance and quiet running as recognised by the Noise Abatement Society.

Despite it being unlikely that Milton Keynes will be affected by significantly cold weather, Nigel is comforted in the knowledge that the Ecodan will be able to operate in outside temperatures as low as -20°C.

As a self-contained unit, only requiring water and electric connections, the Ecodan installation ensured that the renovation project was not delayed. Adopting the ultra-quiet version also means the heat pump doesn’t emit noise levels above 53 dB(A).

Carole Titmuss is editor and publisher of Refurb Projects