house renovation

Discussion in 'OT (OFF Topic) Forums' started by SilverSaloon, Apr 19, 2011.

  1. SilverSaloon

    SilverSaloon MB Enthusiast

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    hi

    we are currently looking at buying an old farmhouse, which will undergo a complete renovation. As we will be installing a whole new heating system, i was wondering if anyone has any experience of the following

    - electric boiler (not the old night storage heating!)
    - oil heating
    - solar panels, wind turbines, generating electricity to the house.
    - type of glazing (double vs triple)
    - rainwater toilet flush

    there is no gas to the property, so our choice is electric or oil. I have no direct experience of either so would be interested in people's views.

    i like the idea of things like triple glazing, flushing toilet with rain water etc, and especially solar panels etc. I know you can probably get some sort of grants for this type of thing too.

    Any specific brands/type that come recommended?

    Cheers!

    Derek
     
  2. Dieselman

    Dieselman Banned

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    Underfloor heating connected to either electric boiler or ground source heat pump would work.

    Before considering any heating applications think seriously about insulation, you can never have too much.
    Tripple glazing isn't necessary with gas filled double glazing and thermal spacer strips.

    You can get grants for Solar PV, but not DHW at present, but if you fancy DHW I can help.
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2011
  3. AANDYY

    AANDYY Active Member

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    Some info on the vegi site for renewables Derek.
     
  4. A-AvantGarde

    A-AvantGarde MB Enthusiast

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    We have a rainwater harvesting system. It was installed by the developers (new build).

    Our system supplies all the toilets, garden hose and I believe the washing machine. It can be overridden to switch back to mains water at the flick of a switch too.

    It's made by Rewatec and I believe they're German:

    http://www.rewatec.de/

    http://www.rewatec.co.uk/
     
  5. finisterre

    finisterre Active Member

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    I have a worcester oil boiler, a 3.5. You can't get them anymore because you have to install overly complex extra efficient boilers nowadays. The old tech was better.

    Anyway, oil is great, a big tank full costs us about £600 and lasts 18 months. We are heating a 5 bed farmhouse that has been lined with 2 or 3 inches of kingspan, insulation is key.

    It is possible to insulate externally too. Worth a look.
     
  6. grober

    grober MB Master

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  7. renault12ts

    renault12ts MB Club Veteran

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    £600 (1000 litres) lasts us 3-4 months, we need two pa. How do you do it?
     
  8. davidjpowell

    davidjpowell MB Enthusiast

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    We used to live in a 4 bed old farm house. Used to cost about £700 a year, 5 years ago.
     
  9. del320

    del320 MB Enthusiast

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    As you know, Derek, we're playing about with a 5-roomed Victorian house near Melrose.

    Even with fluctuating oil prices, anything is better than electricity. Big Sis and B-I-L are also investigating these matters and the fact is, sadly, that the capital costs and payback for any clever "green" solutions completely negates any subsequent perceived or actual running costs. This is particularly true when applied to old properties as opposed to new-builds.

    Yes, I've got two-thirds of an acre and stringing out miles of ground source piping or drilling down a thousand feet is technically no problem.

    Then you've got to tear out all the floorboards and associated joinery to lay concrete, insulation and cabling. You'll have a long gray beard by the time you recoup the installation costs!

    Solar panels etc are the same - never mind looks or planning permission, by the time you are in profit, they will be at the end of their useful lives.

    I've just had a replacement oil c/h system installed - Worcester Bosch allegedly 95% efficient - all singing with quality rads + stats, insulated and pressurised hot water via a Norwegian storage tank (with immersion) and 1.5 bar or so at the shower. We found out that there was a gas supply nearby but BG wanted around £2k, thanks very much, to connect us.

    So the c/h and a multifuel stove (free wood:thumb:) has set us back c£9k and two new d/g sash widows plus refurbishment of five others another £2k. (Decided to retain single glazing and condensation to preserve the crown glass:doh:)

    Don't rely on grants - nae money around, strict conditions and it disappears overnight.:crazy: Apart from anything else, cash is paid through authorised installers - you don't think they might load their estimates, do you?

    An extra pullover might be the cheaper alternative...
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2011
  10. StevenN

    StevenN Active Member

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    You need to consider the cost of installation for ground source heating
    Test bore holes don’t come cheap.

    I would advise looking at the total cost and return on all heat sources.
    You may be able to obtain a grant to offset some of the install costs.

    If you want some useful contacts please pm me and I will give you details of some manufacturers that can help.


    steve
     
  11. x332race

    x332race MB Enthusiast

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    I have just fitted solar panels. There are very generous payments available for these at the moment in the way of Feed in Tariffs (FITS)

    I have a 2.75 kw installation (15 panels) that basically produces around 2.4kw max and appears to be averaging about 8-10kw per day.

    I get about 43p from my electricity company for every kw I produce whether I use it or it is fed into the grid. This should give me a payment of about £1000 pa and this is guaranteed and index linked for 25 years from date of installation.

    I also get a sum of about 3p per unit for every unit I feed into the grid...equating to about £30 per year

    During the day, the solar effectively powers my house and I make savings on my annul electricity bill amounting to about £140

    Thus my annual savings / payments will amount to around £1150. The panels cost me £9,500 to install so payback should be around 8-9 years and I will continue to receive significant payments for a further 16-17 years.

    I am currently heating hot water via solar electricity to make use of the power I am generating, and I run dishwasher, washing machine etc during daylight hours to make the most of it.

    Payments for solar are very generous in the way of FITS. I believe that FIT payments are also available for other "green" technologies and it is worth researching these.

    Of course, I am down south and you are in Scotland, so solar may not be so good for you....but worth looking into though.

    Check out the solar calculator on Ardenham Energys website
     
  12. x332race

    x332race MB Enthusiast

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    Also check out the Renewable Heat Incentive scheme that just just come into effect from April 2011.

    You can install certain "green" heating installations and get a payment for every kw you produce
     
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  13. OP
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    SilverSaloon

    SilverSaloon MB Enthusiast

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    Thanks everyone - a host of great info there i'll take a look through tonight.

    Not sure if underfloor heating is what we want - after working in hospitals my wife doesnt like it.

    If we can generate electricity from the solar panels etc, or small wind turbines (house is in open farmland so lots of wind!) an electric heating system may be worth it.

    anyone got any private sewage solution advice also? septic tanks, bio digestors etc.
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2011
  14. eugekav

    eugekav Active Member

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    very good point keep the heat inside by insulating the walls etc to a high spec espically if they are solid walls.
     
  15. x332race

    x332race MB Enthusiast

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    Totally agree. Also need to stop all draughts no matter how small.
     
  16. x332race

    x332race MB Enthusiast

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    Not sure if you will get a reliable enough amount of electricity from wind / solar......solar panels really only work when the sun is actually shining.... I have a 900w oil filled heater I sometimes switch on when sun is shining but I have to watch out for when sun is not sufficient to power it so I am not using grid electricity. You would be better off with some form of heat pump (ground or air source). I am told that underfloor heating works well in conjunction with a heat pump.
     
  17. OP
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    SilverSaloon

    SilverSaloon MB Enthusiast

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    Yes its all solid stone walls (think typical old farmhouse)

    we are on a strict budget so, even though we want to have some solutions that are not "the norm" we cant break the bank doing so. there are too many other things need doing.
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2011
  18. Dieselman

    Dieselman Banned

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    Planning the order in which to do things is very important, don't even think about doing the finishing parts until you have done the building, draught proofing and insulation.
     
  19. OP
    OP
    SilverSaloon

    SilverSaloon MB Enthusiast

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    Yes the plan is to get it water tight 1st (ie roof fixes/replacement, guttering, windows, damp proof). Then get the heating on. its been open to the elements for a good while.
     
  20. Dieselman

    Dieselman Banned

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    Don't heat it to dry it, that will cause shrinkage and cracks. Either let it dry naturally while doing other work or use dehumidifiers. The stone walls will dry out pretty quickly of their own accord once the building is weather-tight.

    At least you can live in the caravan while doing it.
     
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