1980s detached rural family home, installed Daikin Altherma 3RF heat pump, resulting in a warm and comfortable home
CHALLENGE: TAKING ON SELF-BUILD PROJECT TO UPGRADE & IMPROVE WARMTH OF HOME
For Kilkenny hurling legend TJ Reid and wife Niamh, the decision to renovate the family home turned out to be an easy one in the end – the arrival of the couple’s baby daughter meant they simply had to have more space.
Located just outside the quiet village of Ballyhale, Co. Kilkenny, the property – built in the early 1980s – was filled with happy memories but needed substantial work. “It was an older house and no matter what we did, we couldn’t retain the heat” says Niamh.
Opting to manage their own self-build project, TJ and Niamh worked alongside a builder to make their vision reality. They knocked internal walls and re-configured the layout of the house, then added an extension out the back to give themselves the space their growing young family needed.
Finally, they looked at heating options. Talking to family and friends who had heat pumps installed in their own homes, the couple quickly decided to follow the same path. Additional insulation would also be required, to make the building heat pump ready.
SOLUTION: AIR-TO-WATER HEAT PUMP PLUS INSULATION
TJ and Niamh did a lot of homework on their heat pump options, eventually deciding on the popular Daikin Altherma 3RF model. A classic air-to-water heat pump, the Altherma 3RF features an outdoor unit that extracts energy from the air and transfers it to an indoor unit for heating and hot water, all year round.
In tandem with their new heat pump, the Reids opted to pump foam insulation into walls, floor slabs and external wall facades. They also invested in triple-glazed windows and installed underfloor heating in their kitchen – a challenging phase of the renovation but worth it as the kitchen is the heart of the home, where the family spend “at least 80%” of their time.
Finally, mindful of the house now being airtight, the couple installed a mechanical ventilation system to ensure fresh air circulation and ventilation in their home throughout the year.
RESULTS: A COSY HOME FOR SUSTAINABLE LIVING
With the renovation finally complete, the first thing TJ and Niamh noticed was how cosy and comfortable their new home was. The combination of heat pump and enhanced insulation meant no more draughts, no more waking up cold, no more turning the heat on and off – just a steady, reliable level of comfort.
Sustainability had also been a factor in choosing a Daikin heat pump, with seven-time All Ireland championship winner TJ especially pleased to have made the switch to renewable energy for more sustainable living. “Our home is now future-proofed, it feels good to have moved with the times,” he says.
Not only do heat pumps operate on mostly renewable energy (outside air) but they use far less electricity to run than traditional oil/gas boilers, so they are extremely energy-efficient. Plus of course, there are no fossil fuels or indeed fuel of any kind involved.
“NICE AND COSY”
“We spent a long time living in a poorly insulated house so it feels great to finally have a warm, comfortable home. The kitchen is especially cosy with the underfloor heating, while the radiators work really well off the heat pump around the rest of the house. It took us a while to get here, these things are never straightforward, but we’re so glad we took the decision to renovate and we’re really happy with our lovely new home.”
- TJ Reid and Niamh de Brún-Reid, Kilkenny
Start your heat pump journey
Thinking about installing a heat pump to reduce your household’s energy consumption? Find out more about the first steps towards your reliable, renewable, energy-efficient system for domestic heating, cooling and hot water here.