McCarthy & Stone, the UK’s largest builder of retirement homes, is taking the lead in energy saving and installing heat pumps for the first time to achieve level 3 of the Code for Sustainable Homes.

The award winning developer reviewed a range of alternatives for maximising energy efficiency and attain points for the Level 3 rating at its development in Clevedon, Somerset, and worked closely with the Dimplex team to specify the optimum solution for high performance.

Dimplex heat pump installer partner Azure Natural Energy Systems will oversee this project which is due for completion early in 2009.

Marc Primaroh, at McCarthy & Stone, says: “We investigated all sorts of options as part of our commitment to sustainability and using renewables. Dimplex delivered the most cost effective solution to date with the air source heat pumps. With this solution we were able to avoid the land considerations required when using ground source heat pumps.”

The purpose-built energy-efficient site, to the West of Bristol, will consist of 41 apartments. Three 28kW Dimplex air source heat pumps will service the entire block and be a communal system at the site with metering in each flat; and there will be a separate hot water cylinder for each home.

However, McCarthy & Stone is now starting to think to the future. Marc continues: “We are now developing building design briefs to achieve code 4 and code 5 ratings to work towards achieving the government’s criteria for 2016, so we’re looking at combining Dimplex heat pumps with solar thermal solutions as well as other renewable energy and high efficiency electrical systems.”

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