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Showroom showcase for heat pumps and natural ventilation

A new energy effiicient car showroom is using heat pumps and natural ventilation to reduce fuel bills.

The newly opened showroom at Romford in Essex is operated by Inchcape Honda and is utilising ground source heat pumps, solar panels and natural ventilation to try to cut energy demand by 30 per cent compared to a conventional car showroom.

A company spokesman said: “The Inchcape site uses low level ventilation louvres around the edge of the showroom and high level, chimney-style ventilation terminals mounted on the roof of the building.

“Wind pressure then draws air through the showroom, up through the roof terminals using a ‘stack effect’, creating comfortable working conditions without the carbon emissions that would normally be associated with air conditioning.

“The system has been designed so that it is fully automated, with the vents opening slightly during the evenings of the warmer summer months to pre cool the building, and opening and closing depending on both the internal and external temperature and air quality.”

The site also has nine, 75 metre deep bore holes located beneath the car park providing a source of heat for the building via the under-floor heating system on the ground floor.

The system can also be used to cool the floor slightly in the warmer summer months, assisting the natural ventilation. Solar panels on the roof are used for hot water.