Heat Pump Case Studies: Ground Source Heat Pump in Northumberland

Property type: Detached stone-built 19th century cottage in Northumberland

Product installed: IVT Greenline HT+ C11 ground source heat pump with 'Slinky' ground loop buried in 3 x 50 metre trenches

Distribution system: Underfloor heating

Installation date: August 2008

Cost savings: Approximately £1,000 per annum

Victor Chiles lives in a 19th century stone-built cottage in Northumberland and in 2008 he replaced his aging boiler with a state-of-the-art ground source heat pump from Ice Energy Technologies. Read on to learn more about his experiences.

What prompted you to investigate ground source heat pumps?
"It was a combination of the effect of rising fuel prices and the fact that we needed to replace our old oil boiler. Also the prior installation of underfloor heating was a major factor."

How did you find the installation process?
"From beginning to end the installation of our ground source heat pump took about 3 months which included all the groundworks, plumbing, electrics and the commissioning of the heat pump which was done by Ice Energy.

"The heat pump installation went very well thanks to prompt deliveries by Ice Energy with help from a local electrician and plumber as well as a local farmer with a JCB that was used to dig the trenches which hold the 'Slinky' ground loop."

What has it been like living with heat pumps?
"The heat pump runs itself, is very quiet, in fact much less noisy than the old oil boiler.

"The house keeps a steady 20 degrees even through the very cold winters of the past 2 years. We now only use the log burner very occasionally for cosiness reasons in order to cheer us up on miserable winter days.

"There are no fumes around the back of the house any more and we have not had the issue of stolen oil which was unfortunately something which happened to my neighbour just a few weeks ago.

"All in all, it's a very efficient system - it's a pity more people are not aware of its existence!"

What would you say are the benefits of ground source heat pumps?
"I would say the benefits of ground source heat pumps are the major cost savings, the complete control of the system and very even and consistent heating.

"Additionally, there has been no maintenance required for the heat pump at all in the past 5 years."

What impact has your ground source heat pump had on running costs?
"We were paying £2,000 per year in 2007 / 08 for our oil and electricity. In 2012 our electricity bill was £1,200 so given oil prices have risen over the past 5 years we believe we are saving in the region of £1,000 per annum."

Why did you choose Ice Energy as your ground source heat pump provider?
"We visited the Glasgow Home Show and when we met Ice Energy representatives there we found them to be very knowledgeable and able to give us good advice."

What has the service been like from Ice Energy and would you recommend them to others?
"Ice Energy have been efficient and reliable with a good technical helpline to assist our plumber on his first heat pump job. I would definitely recommend them as a competent and reliable company."

Solutions Used

  • IVT Greenline HT+ C11 ground source heat pump with 'Slinky' ground loop in 3 x 50 metre trenches
  • Linked to existing underfloor heating distribution system

Download a copy of this heat pump case study.