Renewable heat for social housing - from LG

At last, there is significant interest being shown in the UK in the possibility of using heat pumps to meet the requirements for renewable heat in homes up and down the country. Heat pumps have made huge strides across the rest of Europe, in Scandinavia and Canada - which have far more testing climates than we have here in the UK.

Ground source heat pumps do require significant disruption to install and either a lot of land or an expensive drilling operation to get down into the ground, but air source heat pumps come with no such issues. There are a number of very advanced heat pump products readily available here in the UK now – like LG’s Therma V series - and sales have increased significantly, but they are still very much lower than in comparable European countries – such as Germany or Denmark.

renewable heat

Air to Water Heat Pump (AWHP) systems – monoblocs or splits - present a variety of energy-saving options for a home’s heating and hot water system. By replacing a traditional gas, oil, or solid fuel system, an AWHP can significantly reduce carbon emissions and energy usage. The device’s absorption of natural energy from external air makes it consume less energy than conventional heating systems. And they can operate successfully at low temperatures - the LG Therma V has 100% capacity at temperatures as low as -7°C – and it’s very rare for temperatures in the UK to go that low even for a day each year.

The terms ‘Split’ and ‘Monobloc’ refer to how the system is required to be set up in a home and in most UK homes a monobloc is the ideal solution. A Monobloc is a bit like a combi boiler and  is literally a ‘single block’ system, where the heat pump has all of its components - apart from the hot water cylinder which is installed in the home - located inside a heat pump unit situated outside the home.

A Split heat pump unit has both an outside unit which incorporates the heat exchanger and refrigerant and an internal unit which sits inside the property, usually in a utility or boiler room.

Low temperature air to water heat pumps produce water at a lower temperature. These systems don’t produce water as hot as a traditional boiler will as they generally only reach around 50°C at a maximum. These systems are perfectly suited to new build homes that tend to be well insulated. To be at their most effective, they operate well with either larger capacity – possibly K3 design - radiators or a higher number of radiators and or underfloor heating.

renewable heat

The LG R32 Monobloc range has already had a massive impact on the residential heat pump market. The unit is compact, meeting permitted planning permission guidelines, has a low GWP and an energy rating label of A+++. The new Monobloc units incorporate a new Scroll Type Compressor with a seasonal efficiency improvement of 7% over the previous rotary compressor.

The time has come for social housing providers in the UK to take a long hard look at air source heat pumps as a source of heating and hot water for their new homes and for retrofit projects. It’s proven technology and installation is relatively simple. LG is seeing significant interest in its installer training courses at its HQ in Weybridge and at GREenergy training centre in Chesterfield close to the M1. On average, two training courses a month have been taking place for a year now and are planned throughout 2021, with the response from those attending incredibly positive.

For more information on the LG Therma V range and for installation training available contact LG by calling 08448 471 402 (then choose option 4) or if in Ireland call 0919 274 459. Or email or head for the website here