Community centre goes green with Solar Power

5 December 2008

A recently completed Bristol community centre project is doing its bit for the environment by using solar energy to help provide its hot water.

Hartcliffe Community Centre, which hosts a range of activities for all ages, chose an eco-friendly solar package designed and supplied by water heater and boiler manufacturer Lochinvar.

The 12 collector solar installation is providing pre-heated feed water for two Lochinvar LBF300 water heaters. During the summer a high proportion of the centre’s hot water demand may be provided by solar energy, but even on cloudy days the solar gain is likely to generate a temperatures of between 25 and 35°C. This pre-heated feed water means that the LBF300 water heaters use less energy to achieve the required temperature for the hot water supply.

David Pepper, managing director of Lochinvar, said: “A bespoke solar package can be provided with all of our water heaters. Working with our established solar partner, Rayotec Ltd, we provided a tailored renewable energy solution for the centre which conserves fossil fuel and reduces carbon emissions, without compromising hot water supply for the building occupants.”

“Our direct gas-fired water heaters provide a more efficient method of heating water than traditional indirect systems and on solar packages the use of a separate pre-heat tank helps to achieve maximum solar gain.”

The Hartcliffe community centre development was funded by supermarket chain Morrisons plc as part of their investment in the community when they built a new store.

The Lochinvar equipment was specified and installed by Mitton Mechanical Services Ltd, specialists in the supply, installation, commissioning and maintenance of building services.

Mitton projects director Chas Thompson said: “The community centre wanted to reduce its carbon footprint without compromising its hot water supply and in our experience, the combined solar thermal and direct gas-fired water heater package offered the ideal solution.”

About Lochinvar

Lochinvar products were introduced to the UK in 1976 and have been supplied for numerous industrial, commercial and large domestic applications over the last 32 years. The company is a subsidiary of Lochinvar Corporation based in Nashville, USA, and designs, manufactures and distributes a comprehensive range of high efficiency gas fired water heaters and boilers. In addition to EcoForce, EcoKnight boilers and water heaters are also recent additions to the product range, which now comprises a most versatile and flexible portfolio of gas-fired condensing boilers and water heaters. Lochinvar also offer bespoke renewable packages combing direct gas-fired water heaters with solar thermal systems and air source heat pumps.