Heating issue

Hi everyone, just got a quick question. I have heard from a builder doing reno that i should consider an heat pump. Dont know particular one, water to air, air to air. Instead of electric heaters. House built 1930, 5 rooms in total. Hes not given a breakdown of anything all he said will be 5 units. Yet states work for this pump will be 10000 euro. 3500 if I go for radiators.
This place holiday home, no intention of being their in winter
Any information would be greatly received.

When we bought our house ten years ago, its sole heating system was airpumps - they have plusses and minuses. But, if you’re not there in winter, do you need any CH? Of course, I don’t know which part of France you’re in…

Otherwise, a propos heatpumps:-

i) Do you actually need them in every room ? For instance if you only have them downstairs, could their fans create a convection current to heat the rest of the house?
ii) We now only really use ours in summer as we use hardwood logs and granules for heat. But heat pumps are really useful in summer in the South, as an alternative to a/c, as I’ve posted previously they’re cheaper to run and less intrusively chilly in dehumidifier mode
iii) If you opted for radiators what would you use to heat the water?

That’s a lot of money if your not going to be there in the winter months, will you move permanently at a later date.

Air to air Mini splits have one outside condenser unit and multiple indoor fan core units. Could be this is where the 5 units comes from. Inverter drive versions are much more energy efficient than the old L,M, &H 3 speed ones. There are some with heat recovery options which means in cooling mode the heat normally exhausted can be collected to pre warm your water tank or heat battery. When heating you could collect the cold into a heat battery too. Far too many options to discuss in one go.

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We had a ruined cottage restored in 2009 and considered a heat pump system but in the end went for a simpler and cheaper option of electric underfloor heating on the basis that at some future date we would (might) have solar panels as the source of power.
Although you say you have no intention of being there in winter (and neither had we) we took the decision that while they were restoring the cottage it would be sensible to get the job done once, properly, to give all year round accommodation. It was as well we did as we in fact finished up living in the cottage over several winters. Also, having year-round accommodation offers opportunities for letting/lending the place on the shoulders of the season and of being there over Christmas. Just a thought.


Adds to the saleability of a property in a lot of cases, the technology has moved on substantially over the last 5 years and whilst radiators my be a cheaper capital outlay the running costs will claw the difference back.

But only if you are young enough or willing to stay put. I think we worked out the cost if we’d gone for it would only be amortised over about 20 years and at the time we weren’t sure we’d still be in the property in 20 years time.

It can help with saleability even if you do move before breakeven. That said it has to be a decision you want to take. Getting more use out of a reversable unit and being able to collect what was previously wasted heat is again a game changer compared to earlier units so I think at the time you took the right choice.


Thank you so much for all of the replies. I have looked at them all. So very kind of you.
Have now hone with heat pumps.

Pumps, plural? We have one, that connects to radiators and underfloor heating.

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Ours may well be a much older system as it was installed by the previous owner, at least twelve years ago.

However, does your system also work in reverse? And if so, how?

We have a/c and dehumidifier modes that are used far more than the heating mode. There’s also a simple fan mode, but it’s the dehumidifier that’s the best, because as I’ve posted previously, its cooling is far less intrusuve than a/c.

Also we’re in very climatically different parts of France - and perhaps have very different ideas about an ideal climate. I love New Mexico and SA’s Eastern Cape’s semi-desert, but am not attracted to anywhere I’ve visited in northern Europe.

Down here it’s over ten years since we had any snow and that’s fine for us - I saw too much in my teens on top of the Pennines - getting snowed in is only fun for the first couple of days.

Meanwhile we’re now getting shade temps in August of 40-45°, but not getting any frost. So, cooling is more important. We can heat the house easily in a variety of ways, but our other systems won’t cool any room.

The hot water heat pump sort of works in reverse as we can unhook the cold air outlet - which we use to give the dog a cool room in summer. But the heat heat pump doesn’t, but then turned off for the spring, summer, autumn months.

Even when 40 outside our house tends to stay at 21/22. But as you say different climates.

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Well, 24 hours after posting the above; we’re certainly not snowed in as our snow is only above c.500m. However today our weekly walking group set off from nearby, but much higher, Peyrousse-le-Roc, an amazing mediaeval site and its ruined citadel looked even more desolate than usual - like something from Game of Thrones (only ever saw one episode, tho have unknowingly visited many locations where it was filmed Dubrovnik, Girona etc.

Today was difficult terrain, with two descents and ascents each of several hundred metres on rocky gullies and stream beds. After two hours we’d just covered five kms. In the end we only averaged 3kph over 12kms.

This evening I feel in need of two urgent knee replacements, but hopefully will be OK for tomorrow’s far more gentle preprandial walk in the Lot with our anglo-french dining group - we’ve been promised menhirs.


Yeah, I lived there for over 20 years. Snowed in on average every other year, usually for 3 to 5 days and sometimes more than once in a winter. Here are a few photos of where I used to live

images (1)

The big yellow thing was brought up specially to clear the drifts. It was worse a few hundred metres up the hill. It looked like an old shunt locomotive.

Edit: A few more I happen to have on my tablet. Walking in the snow above my house. Middle of March :open_mouth:


Aubin in January 2006

and Peyrusse le Roc just a month later (Feb 2006)


Yet another reason for not moving to Aubin.

Remember driving up that twisty street in a very large Audi A6 estate and dreading the possibility of having to reverse back down it if it got any narrower. Decent little resto at the top though.

They’re currently advertising a grande quine night up in Aubin, but it’s hard to think anything more depressing than driving there up there in the snow to play bingo on a January evening.


I used to tow a trailor up and down there :man_facepalming:

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I’m taking mental notes here

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Brontë country.