Heat Pumps Case Study: Orkney Ground Source Heat Pump System


Property type: Detached bungalow in the Orkney Isles, Scotland

Product installed: IVT C4 ground source heat pump

Installation date: August 2005

Distribution system: Underfloor heating

With a desire to build a new family home but to avoid high fuel prices, Martin Wick chose a ground source heat pump from Ice Energy as an integral part of his new build plans. 11 years on and Martin is as happy now as the day his heat pump was installed. Read on to find out more.

What prompted you to investigate heat pumps?
“Fuel prices at the time were high and expected to rise. We had heard there was a grant available on renewable heating and this seemed like a good idea for reducing our carbon footprint. We had plenty of land available and were able to do the trenches and install the ground loops ourselves which was a big cost saving as well."

How did you find the installation process?
“Initially challenging due to the local agent's lack of knowledge. Our ground source heat pump was one of the first installed locally and we had to wait for the installer's accreditation, but we persevered and were absolutely delighted with the results."

What has it been like living with your heat pump?
“We absolutely love it. Our house is always a pleasant and comfortable temperature and we have plenty of hot water when it is required. We have thermostats in the rooms which can be adjusted if necessary, but we don't have, and have never required, any additional heating in what can be described as a very challenging climate, one of the most challenging climates in the UK.”

Have you applied for the Renewable Heat Incentive?
“Our ground source heat pump was installed too early to qualify for the RHI, but we did get an installation grant at the time of around a third of the cost.”

What are the benefits of ground source heat pumps in your opinion?
“Massive cost savings against fossil fuels, In our area we don't have access to mains gas and as a result, oil prices are very high, higher here than on mainland UK. Our heat pump is now 11 years old and we have never had a problem with it!”

Have you an example of the cost savings your heat pump has produced?
"We know what neighbours and family were paying for oil central heating and their electricity and our costs were not comparable!

"Our heating is on 24 hours a day so it cannot be compared to a house using oil central heating which would only be on for a few hours a day. However, even being on 24 hours a day, it is still cheaper to run than an oil system."

Why did you choose Ice Energy as your heat pump provider?
“Ice Energy offered a higher quality product with a well-established manufacturer which had been tested throughout Scandinavia for years previously.”

What has the service been like from Ice Energy and would you recommend them to others?
“At the start of our process we had questions that we struggled to get answers to from the local agent (no longer an agent), but luckily we managed to bypass him and we got a contact number for the installer who was incredibly helpful and knowledgeable. We have never required assistance from Ice Energy since installation 11 years ago.

"I would definitely recommend Ice Energy and have done so to lots of people. There are at least three of our friends and family who have taken our recommendations and have Ice Energy ground source heat pumps within a couple of miles of our house. Our neighbour, an architect, has also suggested their products to his clients from our recommendations.”

Solutions Used

IVT Greenline C4 4kW ground source heat pump with 2 x 56 metre trenches, 1200mm deep with coiled, 'Slinky' ground loop pipes
Underfloor heating system