Barn conversion achieves AA in energy performance certificate

Dundridge Barn in Devon has been awarded the incredibly high rating of AA for the property’s Energy Performance Certificate following the installation of a Combi 185 integrated system from Total Home Environment.

The Combi 185 system provides domestic heating, hot water and ventilation for the property all in one integrated appliance. The system uses a 95% efficient counterflow heat exchanger together with a super-efficient integrated mini heat pump to heat water and incoming air using warm used air extracted from the property.  By combining the advantages of active heat pump ventilation with the benefits of heat recovery through a passive heat exchanger only a small amount of supplementary heating is required.

Despite having no previous background within the building trade, the conversion of the property was undertaken by Giles Clayden with the help of his brother Matthew, and friends following a great amount of research into renewable energy.

Giles has been impressed with the energy savings since moving into the property, as he comments,  “After carrying out research on energy efficiency, I decided that the Combi was the best option. As the Combi only uses 70 to 450 watts depending on demand, the appliance is easily run off the energy generated from a 4kW solar PV system from Gigabiz.  This utilises free electricity during the day and also powers a small amount of electrical underfloor heating which has also been installed to warm the hard flooring downstairs.  The property benefits further from economy 10 electric tariff.”

He continues, “Despite running a dehumidifier, the underfloor heating, the Genvex and using various electrical tools whilst finishing the conversion, the cost for electricity for the past 4 months has been £150 without the solar panels & with electricity as the only energy source.”

Although the conversion does not have loft space, a small loft has been constructed between the first and second floor above the bathroom where the appliance is located to house the system ducting. 

The Combi offers priority switching in which heating of domestic hot water takes place first. The integrated storage cylinder holds 185 litres and can be fitted with a bare tube heat exchanger, making it ideal for combination with solar heating or a wood pellet boiler for hot water.

The Combi 185 has a maximum air flow of 350 m³/h, allowing ventilation with simultaneous heating in living areas of up to 225m².

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