MP’s home fitted with energy saving Danfoss heat pump

The Willows

MP’s home fitted with energy saving Danfoss heat pump

When the Hon MP for North West Leicestershire Andrew Bridgen commissioned a new build home, he was keen to utilise a renewable energy system that would reduce his carbon footprint and lower his energy bills.

The 581m2 property named The Willows was built near Swadlincote in Derbyshire and is fitted with a ground source heat pump from Danfoss Heat Pumps UK to supply all of its hot water and space heating requirements. The project has been shortlisted in the ‘Installation of the Year’ category at this year’s National Heat Pump Awards.

The Conservative MP, who has campaigned on environmental issues, investigated a range of heating alternatives for his spacious five bedroom home, which also contains a cinema, gym and billiard room. Mr Bridgen was advised by renewable energy specialists Eartheat of Leicester that a ground source heat pump was the most sustainable and cost effective solution to his space and water heating requirements.

Although Mr Bridgen and his family originally planned to live in the house he was selected as the parliamentary candidate for the neighbouring county, so has since put the house on the market.

The property was designed and built by Bridges Developments of Derbyshire, who specialise in low carbon properties, and managing director John Bridges said, ‘There were a range of challenges on this project, in particular the issue of achieving a high level of energy efficiency within a realistic budget. This involved a complete redesign of the original plan and we decided upon an innovative technique which used an insulated concrete form construction. This is a cost effective method of achieving a very high level of thermal efficiency.

‘We worked closely with Eartheat on the design of the heating and hot water system. The original plan included solar thermals to supply hot water, but we added an extra hot water storage tank to the heat pump system to ensure there was an adequate supply. The quality and flexibility of the Danfoss heat pump, backed by the company’s technical support, was vital in achieving these design improvements.’

Because of the high level of air tightness achieved by the concrete walls, Eartheat was able to specify a 16kW heat pump, which is smaller than would usually be required for a new build property of this size and therefore uses less electricity.

A DHP-H Opti Pro heat pump system was installed with an additional 200 litre hot water cylinder to supplement the pump’s internal 180 litre tank. Figures recorded over the first six months show that the system will supply an estimated 49,000kWh of energy per year, while consuming just 11,000kWh of electricity.

The pump is supplied by a ground loop buried in horizontal trenches, which extracts heat from the ground. It provides continuous hot water and feeds an underfloor heating system, which runs throughout the three storey property.

Eartheat’s managing director Richard Walkden explained, ‘We were able to provide a highly cost effective solution for heating and hot water. This was achieved by using our bespoke design for the ground loop collector system which does not require a collector manifold. The developer and MP are so pleased with the result that they have written in support of our entry in this year’s National Heat Pump Awards.’

Chris Dale, director of Danfoss Heat Pumps UK, added, ‘The Hon Andrew Bridgen MP is among a growing number of self builders who are concerned about the environmental impact of their developments and who realise that a ground source heat pump system will minimise the home’s carbon emissions for decades to come.’

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