Eco Friendly Home Heating and Cooling

A large proportion of emissions generated from our homes is through the heating and cooling of the house. Combing solar power, with an air or geothermal heat pump and a hydronic heating and cooling system is one of the best ways of reducing the carbon footprint of our homes. 

For homeowners conscious of their impact on the environment, installing the most efficient, cost effective and low carbon emitting heating and cooling system is crucial. Hydronic systems, popular in Europe for many years, are becoming more popular in Australia, and offer an efficient and sustainable solution when combined with solar panels and a heat pump system.
 
Solar panels generating electricity from the sun partially or completely offsets the running costs of the heat pump which makes large volumes of hot or cold water. This hot/cold water is then used to supply your building with hydronic heating and cooling, and will ensure minimal to even negative running costs. 

Solar Power

Installing solar panels will help reduce your carbon footprint significantly, generating clean, renewable energy for your home. It is estimated that a 6.6kW solar system will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by over 250 tonnes across its lifetime.
 
Solar panels also have a financial benefit by reducing your electricity bills. Payback periods for the initial install costs average between 4 and 7 years depending on the system you have installed. 
Solar panels on roof

Heat Pumps

Stiebel outdoor renewable air source heat pump
 
Heat pumps have become increasingly popular in Australia due to their many benefits, including greater energy efficiency, lower long term costs and they produce no emissions.
 
As heat pumps take up to 75 per cent of the required energy from the air or ground, only 25 per cent of the energy has to be added in the form of electricity. The result is they can deliver three to four times as much heat for the same energy input.
 
Relying on the air outside to heat and cool a property, air source heat pumps are one of the most energy-efficient and environmentally friendly systems to lower your emissions.
 
An alternative to an air source heat pump is a geothermal heat pump, also known as a ground source heat pump. These heating and cooling systems tap into the abundant levels of energy stored below the earth’s surface to reduce your heating and cooling costs by as much as 30 percent. They have a low environmental impact, with limited carbon emissions.
 
Electric heat pumps, whether air or geothermal source, could slash the carbon emissions of buildings by half. And if powered by renewables such as solar, emissions could potentially go down to zero.
Geothermal heat pump

Hydronic system

Hydronic underfloor heating
 
The final piece of the jigsaw is using the hot or cold water generated by the heat pump to heat and cool your home through a hydronic system. The most popular hydronic systems push hot or cold water through pipes under your floor or through radiators attached to the walls. As hydronic systems use radiant heat or cold to provide an even distribution around a room, they are not effected by air movements. Depending on the system you install, the water can be used for heating or cooling your room.
 
As well as being better for the environment, energy efficiency also means lower running costs. It has been calculated that hydronic heating systems are 35% more cost effective compared to running a ducted system
 
The biggest drawback with opting for a solar > heat pump > hydronic system is the initial install cost. But we believe the payback over the lifetime of the system is worth it both financially but also environmentally. You will have piece of mind knowing you have a home which generates its electricity from a renewable energy source, and then this electricity is used in the most energy efficient and environmentally friendly manner through a hydronic system powered by a heat pump to heat and cool your home.

If you are interested in finding out more about how choosing the right heating and cooling system can drastically reduce your carbon footprint while also being more energy and cost  efficient, just give us a call or send us a message online.

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