Pumps continue to be vital to everyone’s lives.
Vast amounts of water, grey water and sewage need moving every minute of the day and on a micro scale, every heating and cooling system in our housing stock requires a pump to help circulate the water to bring warmth and comfort to every room in the places where we live. Every home has at least one.
Small circulating pumps are a key component of all wet heating systems in the UK. They perform as standalone pumps or as integrated pumps in combi and system boilers and they keep the water circulating in underfloor heating systems and air conditioning units too. They are responsible for a much higher percentage of overall household electricity usage than many realise which is why old uncontrolled pumps were targeted by European legislation as a key way of reducing residential energy usage.
The much vaunted ErP legislation saw new demands on new pumps being installed and then in equipment that had an integrated pump as part of the technology. There were a few high efficiency pumps on the merchants shelves before the end of 2012 of course, but at a far higher price than the standard efficiency ones. It was clear that many specifiers and installers were voting with their wallets. However obvious it was that they offered an immediate contribution to lower electricity bills, the higher purchase price was seen as an obstacle that many would not be prepared to vault. It would take legislation before these high efficiency pumps were seen as a realistic option.
From January 2013 high efficiency pumps were demanded by EU Legislation and as 2013 unfolded and availability of anything other than high efficiency options declined, specifiers began to specify the high efficiency options. Now, three years down the line, high efficiency pumps have been accepted and are being purchased from merchants in their thousands.
But does this mean that now in 2017 the problem of old uncontrolled pumps is behind us? The fact remains that whilst there are fewer – there are still many millions of old, uncontrolled small circulators operating in heating systems across the UK. So there is still huge potential to further reduce energy use and energy bills. But in many cases it will require the old pump to fail before it gets replaced.
The concept of lifecycle costs was not new in January 2013 when ErP came into force, but it was a concept that had largely been associated with commercial projects rather than residential ones. But suddenly it became more important and the additional costs that inevitably follow the development of exciting new technology – in this case, the vastly improved electronics and the arrival of electronically commutated motors (ECMs) for small circulating pumps – were justified by the lower life cycle costs of the new high efficiency, more expensive pumps.
Wilo’s strength lies in its huge research and development programme that sees it constantly developing ever more efficient solutions and improving the ease and speed of installation. Wilo’s series of glandless pumps – Wilo-Yonos PICO, Wilo-Stratos PICO and Wilo-Stratos – are seeing increasing popularity across the board. They are relevant for nearly all applications for heating, air-conditioning and cooling in the building services area.
To find out more about Wilo’s highly convenient, reliable family of high efficiency, ErP compliant small circulating pumps, just click on to www.wilo.co.uk.