Frequently Asked Questions

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How much will it cost?

The all-in cost ranges between £12,000 for a small terraced house, to £25,000 for an average sized detached house – note these prices include external wall insulation (EWI). If you’re considering EWI and solar thermal, Skyrad is typically £4000-£5000 more, but offers considerably improved energy savings.


How much will I save?

It depends on the size of the house, but £400-£800 per year if you have gas heating, £600-£1,200 if you have oil heating and £800-£1,600 if you have electric heating.


What grants can I get?

Private homeowners can benefit from the Renewable Heat Premium payment (RHPP), which pays a one-off £600 towards the cost of installation, whilst landlords can be eligible for the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), which could pay up to £500 per year.


How long will it take?

2-3 weeks depending on size and complexity. As the system is applied mainly to the exterior of the house, the disruption inside the house is minimal.

 

I’ve heard heat pumps can cost more to run than they save. Is this true? How much does it cost to run Skyrad?

If you’re on mains gas, installing a heat pump (ground or air source) can cost as much in extra electricity as you save in gas, and make little difference to CO2 emissions. Skyrad uses less than £10 electricity a year, and makes no additions to your other bills.

 

Can it work on any building?

No. You need solid or cavity brick walls.  Typically if your house was built before 1930 there shouldn’t be a problem, Skyrad will also usually work on houses built between 1930 and 1980, however it will generally not be suitable for houses built after 1980.


What about stone or timber frame?

Stone can work, but it will be difficult to replicate the appearance. Timber or steel frame buildings are unsuitable.


What about the solar panels?

Skyrad needs an unshaded south facing roof, or another south facing surface to mount the solar collectors on. This could be a wall or fence as long as it isn’t shaded in winter when the sun is low in the south.


How can I tell if my house is suitable?

Contact us. We can usually tell from google maps. If not one of our installers can come and check.


Will it change the appearance of my house?

Yes. 120mm thick External wall insulation (EWI) will be applied to the outside of your house. This can be covered in a variety of finishes including render or brick slips to replicate or upgrade the appearance of your house.


Do I need EWI?

Skyrad incorporates a layer of Skyrad’s patented intelligent EWI, however we cannot retrofit our system over existing EWI.


What about planning?

Skyrad usually comes under permitted development so no planning permission is required. However council requirements do vary, particularly if you are in a conservation area or have a listed building.


Will it improve my comfort?

Of course! Remember the feeling in the summer  when the sun has just gone down but everything still has a warm glow? That’s exactly what Skyrad does to your house, but it can do it year round, even in the cold back bedroom. As an added benefit the EWI also provides noticeable sound insulation, which will come in useful if you live by a busy road or under a flight-path.


What about maintenance and durability?

All our components except the pump are specified to last 25 years. The pump may need changing every 10 years, at a cost of around £200. We recommend having the system checked every 2 years to check the antifreeze.


Does Skyrad replace my existing heating system?

No, Skyrad provides the majority of your heating needs, but back up is required for extended periods with no sunshine in winter. Usually your existing central heating is used for this.


Can I combine it with other renewables?

Yes. You can use air source or ground source heat pumps, as well as biomass for the back up. As these will be required to supply far less heat than without Skyrad, they can be smaller and cheaper. Note that using a heat pump in conjunction with Skyrad can increase the coefficient of performance of the heat pump, as we can run it at a much lower temperature than other configurations. You can also use combined Photovoltaic Electric and Thermal solar collectors (called PV-T) to generate electricity as well.


How do I operate my Skyrad system?

The Skyrad controller does it all for you. We may need to adjust your central heating timer, and turn the thermostat down as well!


Does it take up much space?

No. We need to fit a hot water cylinder if you haven’t got one, or replace your existing one. The EWI will make your walls about 120mm thicker on the outside only. We extend the window-sills and other surrounds to cover this, and may need to move guttering.