Drastic reduction in heat loss

Prevented down time

Well-designed system

"I'm so glad we have FairHeat on these projects as it prevents us walking into designs that are inoperable or carry huge risk. Well worth the money we pay."

John Morrow

Design & Technical Manager at Origin Housing


The client is Origin housing, a housing association that manages over 6,800 homes in London and Hertfordshire.

Origin Housing purchased a proportion of properties on a larger development as part of a Section 106 agreement, which allowed them to meet planning legislation through affordable housing requirements.

These Section 106 dwellings are either on a separate branch of the heat network or can be fully supplied off a single plant room.


Origin Housing finalised the Section 106 purchase during Stage 3 or Stage 4, meaning they were brought into process at later stage. At these stages it is difficult to have design influence, as there is limited scope to change design without developer/end-client buy in. In some situations, the developer/end-client find it hard to see benefits of changes or do not understand technical aspects of changes.

Huge variances in designs of systems

For the client there was huge variances in the designs of systems, some designs factored in their design supplement, other designs were not CP1 2020 compliant, and a few had serious operational issues which would prevent the system from being controlled or able to hit carbon targets outlined in energy strategy. Issues included: Drastic oversizing of pipework/plan equipment, excessive design temperatures, poor/inappropriate equipment selection, insufficient control, network bypasses, poor dwelling design leading to extended DHW and cold water delivery times, and insufficient detail on specification (e.g. metering & billing, control, insulation, commissioning).

Variances in contractual lines on projects

The contractual lines on projects varied which required different approaches. On some sites the client has maintenance responsibility for just the HIUs in the dwellings and on others they have maintenance responsibility for the plant room as well. The plant room efficiency would have an impact on cost of heat for residents either way.

FairHeat Solution

FairHeat was engaged to carry out a design review to delimit risk to Origin Housing and their residents in following key areas:

  • Operational costs
  • Reliability
  • Resident comfort and perception

FairHeat carried out design review of the sites, highlighting to Origin Housing where risks were in design and specification.

FairHeat used a tailored approach based on the client’s maintenance responsibility and to what changes were possible at the stage of the project we were brought in at – trying to delimit operational risk to Origin Housing and their residents as much as possible.

FairHeat made recommendations to the client in line with CP1 2020, Origin Housing’s Design Supplement, Building Regulations, and HSE recommendations.


Changes made to design in line with recommendations

Stable controls with suitable equipment redundancy to prevent down time

Origin Housing have the confidence to know that they are adopting a well-designed system


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