The Retreat, Devon

Ground Source Review: The Retreat - Front view of The Retreat

Ground Source Review: The Retreat, Devon.

Ms Grosvenor has created the ultimate sustainable new-build house in an area of outstanding natural beauty with a clever use of renewable technologies.

Share Button

Ground Source Review: The Retreat

Ms Grosvenor did a lot of research into the renewable heating options available, and whilst she was determined to be sustainable, she wanted to use an established technology with proven results. Ground source has been around for a long time and Ms Grosvenor had previously worked for a borehole drilling company, so knew how the technology worked. This is also how she heard about Kensa.

She weighed up air source and ground source and concluded that the former is not so good in the winter when the air temperature is colder. Ground temperatures remain constant all year round and provide adequate heating in the winter months, so this was what she chose to go with.

With a 7,500 square foot land area, Kensa installed a large ground array system with slinky trenches in the fields nearby the house. Slinky trenches were chosen as these could be easily refilled once dug out meaning the system was unobtrusive and unnoticeable in the landscape.

As ‘The Retreat’ is a seven bedroom house, Kensa installed a 24kW Twin Compact Three Phase Heat Pump to cover the space heating and an additional 8.5kW High Temperature Heat Pump to fulfil the domestic hot water requirement. This means that all the heat needs of the property are supplied by ground source heat pumps. Ms Grosvenor has also installed control settings in the house to ensure that the heat pumps only come on when she needs the heat.

She said:

I found Kensa very helpful and felt that the installation of the system and digging of the slinky trenches went seamlessly. I would advise anyone thinking of installing a ground source heat pump to recognise that this is a very different way of heating a house and that for the system to have maximum efficiency you need to accurately understand your heating requirements and match the system with good insulation.

Ms Grosvenor has experienced much lower electricity bills than she was previously paying in a smaller property. She is in the process of claiming costs back through the Government’s RHI payback scheme (this scheme has now closed – please visit this page to explore other funding) to offset the cost of the installation.

Key Facts

  • 24kW Twin Compact Three Phase Heat Pump and an additional 8.5kW High Temperature Heat Pump
  • 7,500 square foot land area with slinky trenches in nearby field
  • 'The Retreat' is a seven bedroom eco-house
  • Much lower heating bills and money back through the RHI (this scheme has now closed)