Best type of central heating

Good morning I'm thinking of buying a house that needs a lot doing to it. One of those things is central heating. It's in an area without gas so I suppose the choices are oil or electricity. Is there a website perhaps which will help me decide? I believe that normally oil is cheaper, but I have oil in my present house and am irritated by the variations in price every time I ring up as well as the need to ring a range of suppliers, I'm irritated also by the eyesore of a tank in the garden, and also by the need to keep an eye on levels - why didn't I ring up several weeks ago now I'm snowed in!! But the boiler works well and keeps us warm. On the other hand electricity would be easier to install but possibly with prohibitively expensive continuing costs. I am tempted though by the 'green' electricity you can get, I like the thought of being able to be at least a bit environmentally friendly.
Has anyone else gone through this kind of decision making recently and can help me weigh up the pros and cons?
thanks
jen
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Yes. We opted for an Ice Energy ground heat pump (www.iceenergy.co.uk) - nothing visible, highly efficient (payback is about 5 years in a well insulated hgouse), government grant under the "blue skies" scheme to offset some of the initial outlay, easy to install, works day or night, summer/winter, cloudy/clear and even (like today) when there is a decent amount of snow on it.
Not only is it a "green" way of heating, we buy the electricity from a "green" supplier. Mind you, we have a largish lawn that can take 3 x 50M long by 2M deep trenches that the coils were installed in - not visible once backfilled and grassed.
No maintenance - its a seled unit with a 25-year life... and although these units are newish in the uK, they've been installing 10s of 1000s of them in Sweden (and elsewhere) for many many years.
"Ade the Builder" has an identical system http://www.adethebuilder.co.uk / and is very pleased with it.
Mike
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On Sun, 27 Feb 2005 11:54:21 +0000 (UTC), "Mike Deblis"
25 years doesn't sound very long for what must have been a huge outlay - 50 metre long trenches! I bet it cost an arm and a leg to install. Surely a few fireplaces would have been a bit cheaper. Wood, after all, can be obtained from a sustainable supply.
MM
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wrote:

Depends where you are. Here all lumber would have to be brought in by road. Wood miles aren't sustainable.
Mary

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Heat pumps are NOT green. They use electricity that is about 30% efficient from station to home.

They are horrendously expensive to install. The running cost is about the same as a gas condensing boiler which is "very" cheap to buy in comparison. They tend to work better on low temperature heating and in many cases cannot produce hot enough water in winter for DHW. Working continuously they can over-cool the ground around and have to be switched off to allow the ground to recover.
A minor plus point is the no maintenance. Well not quite right as the inhibitor in the loop needs periodic attention.
The do have their place, but only in remote areas. The sums have to be done properly beforehand before going heat pump. Mabny people go for them because it is a fad.
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Yes but overall gain is better?...

Wouldn't it be better to take the latent heat from the outside air?, which unlike the ground is easily "re-heated"?.....
--
Tony Sayer


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efficient
Air to water heat pumps perform abysmally in winter and need assistance from an immersion to get hot DHW. They are only good enough to run a "very" low temp underfloor heating system (more extra expense again) . They are not recommended for thermal stores.
What determines heat pumps is the COP (Coefficient Of Performance). An electric immersion heater is COP 1, as it turns 100% of the energy used into heat. A condensing boilers is about COP 0.85. Most heat pumps are about 3 to 4, so can just compete with a gas condensing boilers on running costs (electricity is 4 times the cost of gas per kW). I believe some very expensive heat pumps just on the market in the USA are now getting COP 7. This may make them more attractive, especially air to water versions, as no expensive trenches or vertical 60 foot holes to drill. But still the sums have to be done, and the operation assessed properly. Will it deliver enough heat in winter, etc?
At COP 7 a ground sourced heat pump may be well worth it. But I fear it will extract heat from the ground faster than the ground can re-heat the surrounding earth, so a very long and/or deep slinky will be required, which is even more capital cost.
With all this capital outlay you may as well spend it on insulation and air-tightness of the house, that keep steh hosue warm and cool, and not worry ever again about machines.
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<heat pumps>

How do you know that?
Mary
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Logic is against them. And I have met tow people who bought them because they liked the technology.
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That doesn't mean that they go for them because it's a fad.

Nor does that. But even if it did, two people don't add up to "many".
Mary

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not many are sold.
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You know so much ...

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yep. What do you know about this?
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<snip>
Probably more than you did before your Googling....
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I love it. A typical loonie reaction. When I astound them they say I got it from Google. Classic, truly classic.
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it
Look you moron, there is a (later) thread that is asking "Should balancing gate valves be on flow or return?" which you have not posted to, if you really do know what you are talking about than you would have answered the posters question, but you have not - and why not, because you are nothing but a Googling moron who knows nothing more than how to play with yourself !
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More classic reactions.
<snip offensive drivel>
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<snip>
Only offensive to you, but it's the truth about you to everyone else !
Just seen yet another thread that your expertise has passed by, namely " Draining CH and hot water?". If you are the highly skilled plumber / heating engineer and not just the Googling boy of self abuse you would have posted to that group also....
Does your mummy know you're skipping 'sckool' again ?...
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On Sun, 27 Feb 2005 10:22:10 -0000, J Ashton wrote:

Price fluctations are a pain but I've found very little difference in price with the suppliers up here and the one I have an account with will "price match" a little.

Bury it, but that may bring a whole raft of enviromental protection regulations. As you are doing up a place whack in as much insulation as you can to reduce the energy demand for space heating and thus you won't need a huge tank. Also a trellis around it with a climber of some sort will hide it.

Get an "Oil Watchman" device that fits to the tank and sends a radio signal to a plugin device inside that shows a number relating to the oil level. Personally I have but 1cm marks on the sight tube and I check it every week end. Put the number into a spreadsheet and extrapolate when we can expect to run out. At this time of year it's frighteningly soon ater a refill but as the weather warms up it extends out to the end of the summer. B-)

Very much so and if you have a power cut no heat... At least an oil fired system could be connected to a generator. Electricity to be even half economic uses storage radiators, these have a nasty habit of giving out their heat during the day (no one home?) and running out in the evening if you get a sudden cold spell. Yes, they have controls for heat in/out but they are manual and generally not particulary user friendly. There maybe ones with time based automatic controls these days but I can't see how they can help with the weather sudden going cold. (or warm, heat up more than required costing money).

"Green" stuff costs more than "normal"...
--
Cheers snipped-for-privacy@howhill.com
Dave. pam is missing e-mail
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But normal costs the Earth more ... and therefore our grandchildren and theirs ...
Mary

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