Central Heating, Underfloor & New Builds
A thermodynamic panel system is a great option if you are considering a new heat source for central heating, underfloor or new build construction, due to the systems high efficiency and very low running cost.
A thermodynamic panel heating system is made up of a TD block (about the size of a washing machine), buffer tank & TD panels. The buffer tank is designed to act as a reservoir, which is constantly kept hot, ready to supply the radiators or underfloor circuit, when heat is demanded. The buffer tank and TD block would usually be positioned in a plant, boiler or utility room. The block is then connected via pipework to the panels on the outside of the property. Typically a heating system would require between 8-16 panels dependant on the size of the property being heated. Underfloor heating is usually set at a lower temperature than conventional radiators and therefore the number of panels can be slightly decreased. Just like a domestic hot water thermodynamic system the panels can face any direction and can be mounted on the ground, side wall, flat or standard roof.
Thermodynamic Panels achieved the government MCS approval in early 2016; however they do not hold any RHI tariffs. Despite this they are still a viable option for many people for water heating as the systems have a much lower running cost per year and are often cheaper to purchase than its competitive technologies, such as Air Source Heat Pumps or Ground Source Heat Pumps. We are able to link up a domestic hot water cylinder to our TD heating block, so that the heating system can provide both hot water and central heating. All of this can be achieve with an average electrical running cost of between £250-350 per year. This means that the existing fuel source, oil, gas, LPG can be completely removed. However for complete peace of mind the thermodynamic system can be linked up to work in a bivalent form, with a boiler acting as a backup heating source. Below are some common examples of system configuration:
Central Heating or Underfloor
Central Heating & Hot Water
Central Heating & Hot Water with a Boiler as Backup
One of the main considerations when looking to install a thermodynamic heating system is space. Does the property have sufficient space to put a TD block and large buffer tank close together? Also think about where the panels can be mounted with sufficient space. Each panel is 1m wide by 1.8m tall and weighs 8kg. The panels can however be raked close together as they do not require direct sun light.
If your property falls short of these requirements the next best renewable technology, which takes up less installation space, would be an Air Source Heat Pump (also provided by TDUK). These systems have a much higher running cost than a thermodynamic panels system; however they attract an RHI payment for 7 years.
|Feature / Benefits||Air Source Heat Pump||Thermodynamic Panels|
|Life Expectancy||15+ Years||25+ Years|
|RHI Payments||Yes – 7 Years||No|
|Servicing||Once a year||None|
|Works all year||No – Often Bivalent||Yes|
|Radiator Heating?||Yes, but often need new specialised radiators||Yes|
|Hot Water Heating?||Yes||Yes|
|Swimming Pool Heating?||Will need boiler as back up||Yes|
|Running Cost of CH & HW System||£600-800pa||£200-£350pa|