Farmhouse, Worcestershire

A large farmhouse in Worcestershire makes good use of its land, converting to renewable heating.

Case study summary

The owner of a large farmhouse employed Worcester Renewable Energy to install a ground source heating system to provide all the heating and hot water for the property. A grazing field adjacent to the farmhouse was allocated for the ground loops. Because a three phase electrical supply was not available to the site, two single phase ground source heat pumps were specified, each containing a 185 litre hot water cylinder, giving a combined hot water storage volume of 370 litres whilst keeping the space taken up by the equipment. Buffer tanks were also specified for each heat pump to ensure there is no noticeable drop in room temperatures when the heat pumps are operating in hot water mode. All the radiators were upgraded to account for the lower weather compensated flow temperatures delivered by the heat pumps, which were all carried out with minimum disturbance to the customer.

Mr Thorpe said: “Installing a ground source system is something I have been wanting to do for a long time since becoming aware of their installation in other countries but I had held off until the industry and products had matured in the UK.  Me and my wife are really pleased to now have taken the first step to reducing the carbon emissions of our home.”

Customer testimonial

“We are extremely happy with the ground source heat pump system Worcester Renewable Energy have installed. It has been very neatly accommodated in the two cupboards in our utility room allowing for ease of servicing and maintenance. “
Mr Thorpe, Owner.

Ground loop location

A large grazing field within the ownership of the farm was put to dual use, allocating it for the installation of the horizontal ground loops. The field runs adjacent to the same elevation of the property that contains the ground source equipment reducing the amount of ground loop interconnecting pipework required from the active ground loops to the ground source heat pumps.

Ground conditions

Prior to sizing and installing the ground loops, a number of 1m deep trial pits were excavated a strategic locations in the field to establish the underlying ground conditions and thermal conductivity. Due to its saturated nature, the only feasible installation method was to plough the ground loops in, rather than excavate trenches which would have filled with water and caved in.

Ground loop installation

Once in progress the 15 tonne machine made light work of installing the ground loops

Access pit

A large pit was excavated close to the boundary between the field and the garden to allow the insulated tails of the ground loops to be fed under the patio area to the external wall of the utility room where the ground source heat pumps are housed.


To ensure minimal disruption to the customers landscaped garden a small area of patio was taken up to allow a moling machine to be sent underground to the previously excavated pit in the field. The mole was sent through four times ready to receive the four insulated interconnecting pipes from the ground loops.

Underground routes

Two of the holes completed by the moling machine can be seen before the insulated interconnecting pipes from the ground loops were inserted under the landscaped garden up to the external wall of the utility room where they were then brought into the utility room of the property.

Ground closing

Once the ground loops had been ploughed in the machine tracked back over the open wounds in the ground, which due to its weight re-sealed the surface allowing it to heal naturally shortly after.

Completed ground loops

The two ground loops installed converged into the excavated pit adjacent to the boundary between the field and the garden.

Ground surface following installation

Within a short period of time following installation of the ground loops the ground had started to heal with grass returning concealing the wounds previously made in the surface.

Heat pump equipment location

The customer decided to relocate the existing washing machine and tumble dryer to make better use of the cupboard they occupied as it was the perfect size to house the two new ground source heat pumps.

Service ducts

Four holes were core drilled through the external wall of the cupboard in the utility to bring the four insulated interconnecting pipes from the ground loops neatly into the building.


Although the majority of the back wall of the cupboard is obscured by the heat pumps themselves, the wall was still decorated as part of the high standard of workmanship that Worcester Renewable Energy endeavours to achieve.

First fix

Although the majority of first fix pipework installed by Worcester Renewable Energy engineers is rarely to be seen again,  all its engineers take great pride in their work always ensuring pipework is well thought out, neatly aligned, true and level, clipped with brass fixings

Electrical installation

Each heat pump has been installed with its own dedicated mains power supply protected by miniature circuit breakers (MCB’s) to safely accommodate the start-up and running currents of the internal compressors.

Completed heat pump installation

Once both heat pumps had been fully commissioned and put into operation, all the settings and their operation was fully explained to the customer in a formal handover of the system accompanied by a handover pack containing all the appropriate user manuals, certificates and warranties.

Completed buffer tank installation

The two buffer tanks were symmetrically installed in the cupboard adjacent to the heat pumps to allow for easy of serving and maintenance.

Completed installation

With the installation fully completed, all housed neatly in the utility cupboards, the customer now uses renewable energy to generate all the heating and hot water for the property.