Prepare for the switch

Today you might be thinking about electric heating. In a few years time, there could be an exciting new electrical product out there which hasn’t yet come to market.

By preparing your home for the switch to more electrical products, you’re helping future-proof your property.

Electric investments

Building an extension on your house or replacing your roof would take time – from planning permission and getting quotes, to scheduling building contractors and finalising the installation.

An electric heating installation is a similar one-time investment that could help add value to your property by integrating your lighting, power and heating with smart technology and renewable energy. 

 

Heat loss

Using the dimensions of your walls, windows, roof and doors together with your property’s method of construction, your installer can calculate how much heat is lost through the fabric of your property. This will indicate the size your boiler needs to be to replace the heat loss. 

For example the average heat loss for a mid-range insulated, three bedroom family home is around 12.85kW, which means that you only need a 14kW boiler to heat your property. Anything larger will place an unnecessary strain on the electricity network and may prevent other customers from accessing low-carbon heating.

To help reduce your heat loss and running costs, we would strongly recommend that you consider upgrading your home insulation if your property is poorly insulated.

The principles of heat loss and insulation apply in the same way to a large commercial office block or corner shop.

Additional electricity load

Once you have accepted your installation quote, the heat loss calculation will be used by your installer to submit an ‘Additional Load’ application form to Guernsey Electricity.

A similar load application will also be needed for other electrical products such as electric vehicle charging points.

This will check if the incoming electricity supply to the property and surrounding network has the capacity for the additional electricity load needed to power your heating system. 

If work can be carried out without an upgrade on the underground electricity cable servicing your property, you can go ahead with your installation. The lead time varies but in busy periods could be around 6 – 8 weeks.

Cable service upgrade

The cable under the road supplying your home may not have sufficient capacity to power your new electric products. 

If this is the case, your installer will receive a quote from Guernsey Electricity explaining what work is needed to upgrade the underground cable. Often, this work is carried out at no or very little cost to the customer depending on the anticipated additional electricity use by the new product. 

Guernsey Electricity will then liaise with local authorities to plan your cable installation if the road needs to be closed. Timing may be affected by school terms, road embargoes and other nearby road closures. 

This process may take a number of weeks to complete.

However, once a new service cable is supplying your property and powering your modern lifestyle, it won’t need to be replaced for a long time. This may also have the potential to add value to your property as you could tell any potential buyer that the electrical infrastructure to the property has been future-proofed.  

Thinking about switching to electric heating?

It pays to plan ahead. Electrical installations are an investment and can take time to complete. Contact your preferred installer as early as possible to get a quote and find out what you need to do.

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