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Vaillant Responds to the Future Building Standards Consultation

Following the closure of the Future Building Standards consultation, Mark Wilkins, Technologies and Training Director comments:

“Following the Future Homes Standard, announced earlier this year, seeking for all new build domestic homes to produce 31% less CO₂ emissions compared to the existing regulations. Vaillant was eager to respond to the Future Building Standards consultation covering all other types of building including new build non-domestic properties, existing non-domestic properties, and existing domestic homes.

“On the UK’s journey to net zero we must consider all building types. Arguably, new homes are easier to decarbonise as heating and hot water demands are scalable depending on floor area. However, there is a much greater challenge when creating the pathway to decarbonising both new and existing non-domestic properties and existing homes.

“Non-domestic buildings come in many more shapes, sizes and usages than domestic homes. The two extremes to identify a non-domestic building are a small hair salon and a large hospital, it’s obvious these two properties have vastly different requirements and there is no single technology solution to suit both these business types. Heat pumps and direct electric are the two suggested solutions to decarbonise non-domestic properties however, these technologies require careful design, planning and installation therefore every business property has a unique system design. It is concerning that the consultation has defined non-domestic buildings into three building types, Vaillant questions whether this can be done due to the unique system design for each business type. It’s a start, but we look forward to seeing how it works in practice.

“Looking at existing domestic homes there is a significant reward but also a scalable challenge. Existing homes need to be low carbon ready as soon as possible, but when work is carried out on existing homes the homeowner is faced with the cost of the works plus the disruption. Small steps can be made to decarbonise UK homes, the first of this transformation is to reduce the mean water temperature of the heating system to 50˚C which is a much more efficient temperature however resizing the heat emitters to meet the heat demand may be required. This approach will benefit existing condensing boilers and in turn, prepares the home for a low carbon heat pump or hydrogen fuelled heating future."