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solar panel and heat pump

PepPep Posts: 501
edited September 2011 in The bottom bracket
Last night engineer from solar panel company came to inspect our house.

Much to my surprise, he conclued we can't have them because the roof was built according to the regulation at the time (50yr ago I guess) and is not strong enough to support the extra load.

Rather heat pump seems very promising, especially with underfloor hot water.

Anyone has opinion to share...?

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  • PepPep Posts: 501
    The reason heat pump goes very well with underfloor hot water is this:

    Underfloor hot water for heating, means the water temperature is much less than the hot water you would have in the radiatior.

    So, heat pump will exchange heat between warm water and cool outside, instead than hot radiator water and cool outside. Because the temp difference is much less, then efficiency of the process is improved.

    Makes sense to me.

    Anye experience to share...?
  • Solar isn't viable, the only way it's being sold in the UK, is with the completely uncommercial feed-in tarrifs.
    We're being robbed blind with these "renewables", the payback periods are wholely reliant on the feed-in tarrifs, sooner or later, a Government will scrap them and that will be the end of this whole crazy scheme.
    As a method of heating water, assuming you've not got a decent, energy-efficient boiler, it's potentially useful, at least in summer.
    Remember that you are an Englishman and thus have won first prize in the lottery of life.
  • Solar isn't viable, the only way it's being sold in the UK, is with the completely uncommercial feed-in tarrifs.
    We're being robbed blind with these "renewables", the payback periods are wholely reliant on the feed-in tarrifs, sooner or later, a Government will scrap them and that will be the end of this whole crazy scheme.
    As a method of heating water, assuming you've not got a decent, energy-efficient boiler, it's potentially useful, at least in summer.


    you would be surprised how much heat you can generate in winter from them too. and yes I agree about the solar panels bit. now looking at an alternative green energy supply as we have combi with no space for a tank .
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  • pb21pb21 Posts: 2,168
    Solar isn't viable, the only way it's being sold in the UK, is with the completely uncommercial feed-in tarrifs.
    We're being robbed blind with these "renewables", the payback periods are wholely reliant on the feed-in tarrifs, sooner or later, a Government will scrap them and that will be the end of this whole crazy scheme.
    As a method of heating water, assuming you've not got a decent, energy-efficient boiler, it's potentially useful, at least in summer.


    Solar water heating isn't on the FIT scheme.

    They are also are commercially viable as more people who have them installed, will eventually lead to lower costs all round.

    Governments wont scrap them as they are part of an international plan legally enforceable to reduce carbon emissions.
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  • peasepease Posts: 150
    Heat pumps can work if the pump,boiler and heatinng method (in this case a poly pipe under floor in a screed?) Are correctly specified installed and ballenced. A lot of green systems are most efficient when people understand how to use them properly. A key example of thiis is the nibe fightstar boilers that take a few days to get upto twmperature so its best to never turn the thermostat down.
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  • Nah sod it all hippy censored build more nukes ;)
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  • petemadocpetemadoc Posts: 2,667
    I'd be surprised if your roof really couldn't take the weight, I'd get a second opinion on that one.

    We have a solar tubes to heat our water, they work well when the sun shines whatever time of year it is and in the winter we use a log fire to heat the water.
  • If your thinking of solar thermal, heat pump, biomass, etc. then keep your eyes and ears open for news on the Renewable Heat Incentive. The Government should be announcing details soon which should make it a more attractive investment.

    We have solar tubes, and they do work well. We top this up in the winter with biomass (stove) and if necessary also the old fashioned gas boiler. With Gas prices going up (this trend will continue) it becomes a better investment all the time.
  • Pep wrote:
    Last night engineer from solar panel company came to inspect our house.

    Much to my surprise, he conclued we can't have them because the roof was built according to the regulation at the time (50yr ago I guess) and is not strong enough to support the extra load.

    Rather heat pump seems very promising, especially with underfloor hot water.

    Anyone has opinion to share...?

    Not sure how you define "solar panel". Do you mean solar water heating or Photovoltaic (PV) for generating electricity? The first is quite heavy but takes relatively little space on a roof whilst the 2nd are quite light but may take up most of your available roof space. A second or third opinion from well researched suppliers might help. Also, if your roof really can't take the load it may be possible to beef it up but check with an expert in roofing.
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  • PepPep Posts: 501
    Sure, I will get few more professional opinions, not because the first engineer says cannot be done, but because it's always good practice to hear more than one expert.

    Both PV and solar water are solar panels. We were considering either or both.

    Yes, strentghtning the roof is an option. No idea how much hassle and cost will take. We will ask some builders.
  • If your thinking of solar thermal, heat pump, biomass, etc. then keep your eyes and ears open for news on the Renewable Heat Incentive. The Government should be announcing details soon which should make it a more attractive investment.

    The details...
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/sep/30/renewable-heat-incentive-withdrawn
    Possibly only a delay, but it any case seems incredible after the feed-in tariff scams have been promoted out of any proportion to the effectiveness of PV technology in these latitudes.
    "Consider the grebe..."
  • If your roof cannot take the weight of panels these could always be an option.

    http://www.reuk.co.uk/Solar-Roof-Tiles.htm

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