residential development guide for home extensions and new dwellings 



VIESSMANN - Building Materials and Architectural Building Products

Viessmann offers a comprehensive range for oil in three categories, including highly efficient low temperature and condensing boilers from 13 to 20 000 kW in cast iron and steel, as both freestanding and wall mounted versions.

The Viessmann gas boiler range in three categories includes freestanding and wall mounted boilers as low teperature and condensing versiond from 4 to 20 000 kW.

Viessmann is one of the leading European manufactures of solar thermal systems. Innovative flat-plate and tube collectors for DHW heating and central heating backup are available.

Viessmann offers complete solutions for wood - from pellet boilers for supplying heat to detached houses as well as to complex systems for the generation of power and heat from biomass, for example for residential complexes, commercial operations or utility companies  (output: 4 to 13 000 kW).

Utilising naturally occuring heat. The comprehensive heat pump range from Viessmann extends from compact units for passive houses to cascaded solutions with several hundred kilowatt output. Brine, water and air can serve as heat sources.

Most home extensions requiring planning permission will probably benefit from using their products during the build.  Many Architects or House Extension Designers can incorporate their products within the scheme design drawings and specifications.

The following article may be of interest for homeowners researching this type of building product for inclusion within their own house extension scheme.

Solar Thermal Vs Solar Photovoltaic Systems - Pros & Cons

So, you've heard good things about solar and are excited at the thought of using the sun to power your home. What's next? If you're just starting think about solar, you may be surprised to discover that there are two different possibilities for turning your house solar: solar thermal (usually matte black with prominent pipes) and solar photovoltaic (usually blue and shiny).

A solar thermal system collects heat energy from the sun and generally uses it to heat either water or liquids that will then transfer their heat to water or air. In largescale solar thermal plants, the heat can be used to power steam turbines. In contrast, a solar photovoltaic system, also called a solar power system, collects sunlight and converts it directly into electricity through a semi-conductor material like silicon. Both types can slash electricity bills and pay for themselves well within their lifetimes. Let's take a look at each.

Pros of Solar Power Systems


  • Solar photovoltaic technology produces clean, green electricity for 30+ years. Quality panels professionally installed usually have warranties of at least 25 years.
  • The electricity produced by the system can offset 60% or more of a household's energy needs, depending on energy use and system size and orientation.
  • Peak production coincides with peak energy needs in the summer. Solar panel systems can power demanding appliances like refrigerators and air conditioning without stressing the grid.
  • Solar panels can protect & extend the life of roofs or even be integrated directly into a building for a more aesthetic appearance.




  • Greater upfront investment & longer payoff (10+ years)
  • Average efficiency for solar panels remains under 20%
  • Expensive raw materials translate to higher equipment costs
  • More roof space required

Pros of Solar Thermal Systems



  • Up to 70% efficient in collecting heat energy from the sun; less roof space required.
  • Reduces electricity and gas bills by using the sun to warm water and spaces.
  • Lower initial investment and shorter payback period (3-5 years).
  • Dependable, less complex technology already used extensively in Asia & Europe.




  • Less effective in the winter
  • Peak performance in summer coincides with least need for heating
  • Less versatile than solar photovoltaic

Bottom Line: Either solar technology is better and less expensive than relying on fossil fuels and pollutant energy sources. Both come with state and federal incentives to help with costs. Some houses even combine thermal and photovoltaic for both heat and power!