Your questions answered

Do I need planning permission to install a solar thermal system?2019-05-14T08:40:16+00:00

Planning permission is important, because the Atmos Ephesus 24 is an external unit and is subject to UK planning rules. You do not need planning permission if your installation fits within the “permitted development” rights, and the rules for renewable energy installations are in Section 14 of UK planning law which can be found at this web address http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2015/596/schedule/2/part/14/made

You will need planning permission if your property is a listed building or conservation area.

If you are unsure whether or not you require planning permission you can make an inquiry at your local Council offices for an inquiry fee (normally £31). If you do require planning permission it will cost £206 to make the application, plus drawings.

We have also developed the Atmos Solar Shed to help alleviate the planning permission issue which provides a good sized garden shed with plenty of standing room, and a solar thermal system all in one.

Which version of the Ephesus 24 system do I need?2019-05-14T08:40:17+00:00

E24-Basic: Standalone system with no connection kit for installations where there is no heating system. You can stand it in the middle of a field and connect up the cold water supply and out comes hot water at a safe temperature!

E24-Unvented: The E24-basic plus the connection kit for use with an unvented hot water tank and advanced anti-legionella kit.

E24-CombiThe E24-basic plus the connection kit for use with a solar compatible combi boiler and advanced anti-legionella kit.

E24-CombiPlus: The E24-basic plus the connection kit for use with a solar compatible combi boiler and advanced anti-legionella kit.

You can read more on the Atmos Ephesus 24 solar thermal system versions here. It’s not always obvious if a boiler is solar compatible so please complete our enquiry form with your boiler make and model and we can let you know which version you need.

How much space do I need for the Atmos Ephesus 242019-05-14T08:40:17+00:00

The Atmos Ephesus 24 has a footprint of 2.1 x 2.2m. It can be mounted on a flat roof, on the ground, or on the E24-Stand which raises the system up to 2.4m on a frame made of rust-resistant galvanised steel tubes. This allows you to walk underneath, and reduces the possibility of reduced output due to shading from nearby fences or bushes. A hard standing base is required for stability.

Planning permission may be required for your installation so we recommend you read the information this. Alternative we offer the Atmos Solar Shed which allows you avoid most planning issues.

How is the Atmos Ephesus installed2019-05-14T08:40:17+00:00

The Atmost Ephesus 24 solar thermal water heating system can be installed free standing on the ground, or on 2.4m high platform, or on a flat roof.

Do I need a maintenance contract?2019-05-14T08:40:17+00:00

The Atmos Ephesus 24 is a very simple system, and requires little maintenance. We recommend that you clean the tubes with a soft cloth twice a year. Every 5 years maintenance should be done by an Atmos Solar approved installer. This involves checking all the settings of the system and ensuring that everything is working correctly. The anode must be replaced as its life is 5 years. The tubes can be removed and checked for scale formation, and if necessary cleaned and refitted. If there are any tubes that are faulty, they can be replaced easily as the engineer will carry in stock.

Contact us for more information on looking after your solar thermal solution.

How much VAT will I need to pay2019-05-14T08:40:17+00:00

If you by the Atmos Ephesus 24 solar thermal system direct you will need to pay 20% VAT. However, if the system is supplied by the installer you will only need to pay 5% VAT

What is the anti-legionella system?2019-05-14T08:40:17+00:00

In all installation of the Atmos Ephesus a means of protection against Legionella is necessary. To do this we heat up the whole 150-litre tank to 60 deg C at least once a week.

The E24-Basic system is supplied with a programmer to turn on the heat source at a specific time and for a set period. For the basic system, the heat source is the electric immersion heater. For the other three systems, it can also be the electric immersion heater, BUT the preferred method is a 12v dc pump with a plug-in 240V ac/dc transformer, and a thermostat which heats up from the house hot water system. We recommend this method because homes are generally heated by natural gas, and this is much cheaper than electricity.

Find out which system version you need here.

What certifications does this system have2019-05-14T08:40:17+00:00
  • ISO9001-2018 European certification for company quality management
  • Solar Keymark approved- certification by the leading European certification body for solar thermal systems.
  • RHI approval- Solar Keymark system certification means it qualifies as an approved product for the Renewable Heat Incentive
  • EN12976/1 and EN12976/2, certification of the hot water tank to meet UK Building regulations, Health and Safety rules.
  • Building Regulation Document AD-G3 Hot water supply and systems compliant

You can view or download the certificate here

How much does it cost?2019-05-14T08:40:17+00:00

The standard system with mounting frame is £825 plus VAT. The raised platform for ground mount is £248 plus VAT. For the full price list see the Atmos Ephesus 24 page.

Do I need to change my boiler or heating system2019-05-14T08:40:17+00:00

The Atmos Ephesus 24 is designed to integrate with both combination boilers or unvented hot water cylinders and you can read the guidance on which version of the solar thermal system you need here. Some older non-condensing combi boilers will not accept pre-heated water, and if you are uncertain, fill in the enquiry form and we will check it and let you know.

If you would like to change your old boiler for a modern condensing boiler, that will bring additional fuel savings and CO2 emissions reductions. We can recommend the best combi boilers to integrate with the Ephesus 24. It will be cheaper to change your boiler at the same time as installing the Atmos Ephesus 24, and you will then have a system of the highest efficiency.

How long will system last2019-05-14T08:40:17+00:00

The system is guaranteed for 5 years and has a life expectancy of more than 20 years with minimal maintenance required.

How much can I claim on the RHI scheme2019-05-14T08:40:17+00:00

This will be calculated by the MCS registered installer using the official RHI calculator. It depends on your location in the UK, the orientation of your solar collector, and the number of people in your home. Currently, the tariff is 20.66 p/kWh and the Atmos Ephesus 24 solar thermal system will typically generate between 900 and 1,100 kWh per year.

Are there any grants to help with costs?2019-05-14T08:40:17+00:00

Provided your system is installed by an MCS accredited installer you should be able to claim the RHI on any Atmos Ephesus 24 system. A list of accredited installers can be found on the following web site; https://www.microgenerationcertification.org/consumers/installer-search/

What is the difference between solar thermal and solar PV?2019-05-14T08:40:17+00:00

Solar PV  or to give it the full name, solar photovoltaic, uses very different solar panels to generate electricity from the sunlight. Solar thermal uses solar energy from sunlight to heat water.

Will it work even if its cloudy?2019-05-14T08:40:17+00:00

To get the best out of the Atmos Ephesus you obviously need sunshine, however even on cloudy days the infra red radiation shines through the clouds, and evacuated tubes are very good at absorbing this radiated energy.  So cloudy days will still make a valuable contribution to pre-heating your water and reducing the amount of fossil fuel your heating system needs. On cold winter days (yes even below freezing) the tubes will absorb solar energy, and the vacuum tubes will retain the heat and transfer it into the hot water tank.

Does the UK weather have enough sun?2019-05-14T08:40:17+00:00

Yes absolutely, in fact evacuated tube systems like the Atmos Ephesus are well suited to cooler climates.

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