Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Free Energy-Saving Kit for Whitehead 

Thanks to Transition Town Whitehead, our Community Centre has become the latest building in town to have the benefits of solar hot water. 

Following our completion of the Big Energy Savings Challenge, we were awarded £7500 by Power NI, to be used for the benefit of our local community. We decided to fund this installation, along with new double-glazing and internal light sensors for the building - all designed to save energy and money for the Community Centre.

You may have noticed the new equipment, perfectly positioned for maximum effect on its south-facing roof, just above the main entrance. It’s a Kingspan system, designed specifically for the weather conditions we get in Northern Ireland.

Solar hot water systems work by using the sun’s radiation to heat fluid inside the vacuum tubes of the roof-mounted collector; the heated fluid gets transferred to a large insulated hot water tank. It can provide around half of the annual hot water requirements of the centre and, in the summer months, could produce all that it needs. 

There are already quite a few houses in Whitehead using these systems. They certainly represent the best application for active solar heating in our climate; in years to come they are likely to become as common in new homes as double-glazing is today.

And now for you, too

Meanwhile, Transition Town Whitehead has a supply of smaller energy-saving devices to give away to Whitehead residents. Again, thanks to Power NI, we have a range of equipment that will help you to insulate your home, save energy and reduce your heating bills. 

The following items are available now:

  • Radiator Reflectors: by fixing these sheets to the wall behind your radiators, the heat is bounced back into your room rather than heating up the wall and the street outside.
  • Door & Window Draught Excluders: these reduce the chilling effect of winter winds that leak in through loose fitting doors and windows, particularly useful for the many older properties around Whitehead.
  • Chimney Pillows: if you’ve got a fireplace that is no longer in use, these inflatable urethane balloons can be used to block the chimney to stop warm air leaving the room and preventing draughts.
  • Rundown Timer plugs: this plug will switch off an appliance after 30 minutes, perfect for irons, hair straighteners and the like, which sometimes get left on accidentally. 
  • Standby Saver Multi-Sockets: this equipment allows you to switch off your TV, DVD and the other appliances that are nowadays connected with a single remote control device.
  • Hot Water Tank Covers: insulating jackets to conserve the heat in your tank, saving energy and money.
  • Low-energy lightbulbs: a selection of bayonet and two-prong (halogen-type) bulbs.

We’ve already distributed lots of this equipment but limited numbers of all these items are still available - free to Whitehead residents. If you want any of them, please contact us at transitionwhitehead@me.com to request your chosen item. 

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