Oil is not lost to renewables

“Hybrid systems offer a smart choice to owners of oil-fuelled homes” is the message from Glow-worm’s Pippa Wibberley
“Hybrid systems offer a smart choice to owners of oil-fuelled homes” is the message from Glow-worm’s Pippa Wibberley
At a time when many oil installers are considering a move into renewables, Glow-worm’s commercial director Pippa Wibberley asks whether the choice needs to be as clear cut, with the added option of going down the hybrid route.

“As oil prices continue to drive skywards, interest in renewables increases from homeowners with oil-fired boilers looking to reduce their dependency on the fuel.

“Yet for both the homeowner and the installer, the oil-fired boiler remains one of the most practical heating options for off-gas areas and many homeowners still favour the familiarity and comfort which comes from having a boiler in their home.

Best of both

“Combining renewables with an existing boiler system can therefore be an appealing option to the homeowner who is keen to reduce the environmental and financial impact of their heating, but wants to keep their traditional oil-fuelled heating system in place.”

Advanced hybrid systems, such as Glow-worm’s Clearly Hybrid Universal model, are designed to offer a stepping stone for both installers who are looking to trial renewable technologies, and homeowners who are keen to make significant savings on their fuel bills. By combining almost any new or incumbent boiler, including oil and LPG, with an electric air to water heat pump, dependency on the fuel is reduced and, as such, the annual operational costs of the boiler.

The installer programmes the system to select the most cost-effective method of heating the home, be that through the heat pump or oil-fuelled boiler. The hybrid system then uses intelligent controls to make an automatic selection of heat source based on energy tariffs and outdoor temperatures.

Benefiting from oil

“In very cold conditions, when there is a smaller amount of energy in the air for the heat pump to use, the hybrid will select the boiler, allowing the homeowner to benefit from using oil when it is most effective to do so,” adds Pippa.

“In more general UK weather conditions, the superior efficiency of the heat pump will come into effect as the home’s central heating system, significantly reducing its dependency on oil as the singular fuel source.

Perfect introduction to renewables

“It’s important that installers take the time to promote the option of combining traditional heating systems with renewables to help ensure the oil-fuelled market continues to evolve and adapt in line with other heating technologies; Hybrid systems provide the perfect introduction to renewable technologies and offer a smart choice to owners of oil-fuelled homes who want a practical, yet efficient heating option for the future.”