Our FAQ – Your Questions Answered

Here at Summit Energies, we are one of the leading suppliers of Renewable Energy solutions. Our team will go above and beyond to provide excellent customer service and provide you with expert advice you can trust.

We have gathered a range of questions that we frequently receive as a team and have answered these questions in full.

We hope that our FAQ page informs you about the wide range of services we provide and help you make an informed decision when picking which solution is best for your needs.

If you have a question about the range of renewable energy solutions we offer, please feel free to get in touch today; 01291 421 671.

Air Source Heat Pump

What are Heat Pumps?

Heat Pumps are a low-carbon alternative to a traditional gas or oil boiler, which will help you to reduce your space heating and water heating bills.

What is an Air Source Heat Pump?

An Air Source Heat Pump will extract heat from the outside air and deliver heat and hot water efficiently and cost-effectively, and transfer it throughout your radiators, underfloor heating and hot water tank.

Will an Air Source Heat Pump system work all year round?

Air Source Heat Pumps are, in fact, one of the most efficient ways to heat your home, all year round. Even in temperatures as low as -25c, an air source heat pump will be able to heat your property using the air outside.

Will the System Reduce my Carbon Footprint?

An Air Source heat pump is an excellent way to significantly reduce your home’s CO2 emissions compared to more conventional oil and LPG boilers.

What is the 'Coefficient of Performance' (CoP) of a heat pump?

The CoP of a heat pump is a measure of how efficient the heat pump system is. So, for example, if a system has a CoP of 4, that means that every unit of electricity provided to the system, 4 units of heat will be provided.

Do I Need Planning Permission?

In England and Scotland, air-source heat pumps can be considered ‘Permitted Development’, which means you will not need planning permission. However, the criteria can be rather complicated, so we do recommend that you check with your local planning office before you commit to any developments.

In Wales, an air source heat pump installation will require planning permission.

Do Air Source Heat Pumps Make Noise?

Some systems will be noisier than others. Older models have ‘fixed speed compressors’ which can be noisier than newer models which have ‘inverter driven’ heat pumps. In fact, Mitsubishi Ecodan is a market leader, with 45dBa for the 5kW model at 1 metre.

Will I Save Money By Installing an Air Source Heat Pump?

Data provided by BRE testing (the UK’s leading centre for independent advice for the built environment) and from case study analysis, it has been proven that running costs can be significantly reduced over conventional fossil fuel systems and direct electric systems.

However, savings will be subject to how your overall system performs. This performance will further be affected by the level of insulation your home has and the build type, as well as the other heating system components.

Where Do We Supply Air Source Heat Pumps?

Here at Summit Energies, we proudly supply Air Source Heat Pumps throughout South Wales and beyond, including Cardiff, Gloucestershire, Bristol and more.

Ground Source Heat Pumps

What Size GSHP Do I Need?

To find out which heat pump you need, it will all depend on the raw heat loss of your house, this is something that we can calculate for you.

What I Still Need a Boiler with a Heat Pump?

In contrast to other systems, such as solar thermal, which require a backup boiler, a ground source heat pump typically will be able to provide all of the heating and hot water your home requires.

Will a Heat Pump Require a Lot of Maintenance?

Typically, a domestic heat pump will not require any maintenance. Periodic cleaning of the collector may be required, however, to ensure that your system continues to perform at its best.

If you are looking to invest in a commercial system, particularly an ‘open-loop’ system, it may require some maintenance, however, this will be very similar to a traditional heating system.

Will I Need Planning Permission?

In England, Scotland and Wales, domestic ground source heat pumps will generally not require planning permission, as they are ‘permitted developments’. However, it is always worthwhile to check with your local authority to see whether you need planning permission.

Solar Thermal

Is Solar Thermal Right for You?

If you are looking to reduce your energy bills and carbon footprint, then installing a solar thermal system can be an excellent choice.

How Does Solar Thermal Work?

A solar thermal system will collect heat from the sun using solar panels on your roof. The heat collected is used to heat up water stored in a hot water cylinder.

A backup boiler or immersion heater can also be included in the system as a backup to heat the water further if needed.

There are two different types of solar water heating panels;

  1. Evacuated tubes,
  2. Flat plate collectors.
What Saving is There With a Solar Thermal System?

A solar thermal system is an excellent way to save on your energy bills. In fact, a recent study showed that across a range of household and system sizes, typical savings were around £60 a year when replacing gas heating, and £70 a year when replacing electric immersion. It’s important to note that these savings will vary from household to household.

Do You Need to Maintain a Solar Thermal System?

Your solar thermal system should be checked every two to three years. This will ensure that there are no leaks and that everything is working as it should.

How Much Roof Space Will You Need?
The amount of roof space that a solar thermal system takes up will all depend on your house and the number of occupants. Ideally, a 3m x 2m system will be substantial for the average home. However, smaller, lower output systems can be installed onto small roofs.
Will a Solar Thermal System Work on Cloudy Days?

Yes, it will! This is because there will still be a certain amount of heat and the sun’s ambient radiation. However, the system will always work better on a sunny day.

What Size System Will I Need?

The size of the system your household needs will all depend on your water heating energy usage. This will typically be 0.75kW per person in your household. 

The bigger the system you install, the more hot water it will be able to produce. However, the most important thing is to ensure that the system is large enough to supply the hot water you require.

Underfloor Heating

How Does Underfloor Heating Work?

Underfloor heating essentially works like a radiator. It will heat the room from the ground up through a series of either pipes or cables embedded in the floor.

Is Underfloor Heating More Efficient Than Radiators?

Yes! In fact, underfloor heating can be up to 30% more efficient than traditional radiators.

Can Underfloor Heating Be Used on First Floors?

Yes. Underfloor heating systems can be installed on any floor.

What are the Benefits of Underfloor Heating?

Underfloor heating has many benefits, including;

  • Comfort levels; Warm water underfloor heating will provide you with a comfortable warmth that feels natural, in a similar way to how you are warmed by the sun. Radiators will heat your room using convection, drawing cold air from the floor and up to the ceiling, whereas underfloor heating produces a radiant warmth. The entire floor is heating, so no longer will you have cold spots or draughts.
  • Low Running Costs; Once installed, an underfloor heating system will be incredibly energy efficient – around 30% more efficient than radiators. The system will also use lower temperatures and cover a much larger surface area of the room. If installed correctly, your underfloor heating system will help save you energy and money on your monthly bills.
  • Design Freedom; An underfloor heating system will free up a lot of wall and floor space, giving you a lot more freedom regarding interior design.

  • Health and Safety; An underfloor heating system will provide gentle heat and low humidity which is a much kinder environment for your furniture. It will also reduce the circulation of dust and mites, making the air in your home cleaner and less allergenic. This makes it the ideal system for allergy sufferers. It’s also ideal for the elderly and children, as there are no hot or sharp surfaces.
Is Underfloor Heating Suitable for My Home?

No matter what the age, size or construction of your property, underfloor heating will likely be suitable. Whether you’re looking to build an extension, new build or simply just renovating your existing home, we will ensure that your underfloor heating system is perfect.

How is Underfloor Heating Installed?

If the system is being installed into a new build or extension, the pipework will be laid into a layer of screed on the new floor.

If it’s being installed into an existing home, it can be fitted on top of your existing floor.

What Floor Coverings Work Best with Underfloor Heating?

A wide range of flooring solutions can be fitted with underfloor heating, including;

  • Stone & Ceramic; Hard flooring will be the most efficient type of flooring for use with underfloor heating. Stone, ceramic, polished screen or marble will all be incredibly thermally conductive, allowing energy to transfer quickly across the surface. However, flagstones will take longer to reach the right temperature.
  • Timbered & Engineered Roof; Engineered timber flooring will be the best wooden floor to use with an underfloor heating system, as it will perform well with fluctuating temperatures. Solid hardwoods and softwoods will also transfer heat well, but you’ll have to ensure that the thickness is right. Parquet can also be used, as long as it is glued to the screed.
  • Laminates & Vinyl; Both practical and versatile, laminates and vinyl can be used with underfloor heating. However, when picking your flooring, check the maximum floor surface temperature and ensure that it is safe to be used with underfloor heating.

 

Can I Use Underfloor Heating with Heat Pumps and Solar Panels?

If you are looking to create a more eco-friendly home, with a lower carbon footprint, then it can be a great idea to pair your underfloor heating with other renewable options such as heat pumps and solar panels.

Will My Pets Be Safe Sleeping on Underfloor Heating?

We can assure you that your pets will be very happy when you install an underfloor heating system! It’s perfectly safe for dogs, cats and any other pets to sleep on.

If you have any questions about the range of renewable energy solutions we offer, please call our team today on 01291 421 671.