Air-to-air and heating?

I currently have a 15 year old condensing gas boiler for heating and water supply. Currently working well but now hard to get spares, so replacement will be needed soon.

I live in a bungalow with large living room/kitchen (30sqm with a partial partition) and 4 “bedrooms” two of them used as home office/studies (each 12sqm). Two bathrooms (one with its own heater). Hall space. Radiators everywhere - all bar one with thermostatic valves – no central thermostat.

My wife has lung problems so we keep the living room very warm in (23/24 degrees at least) Other rooms vary – some are kept very cool, some with a lot of electronics are too warm. Both bedrooms face south and all rooms are too hot in summer

I am considering a hybrid solution with air-to-air heating/cooling for the living room and studies with (when its needed) a smaller replacement gas or electric boiler as backup for hot water and for heating to cover the bathroom and (when needed) the bedrooms, plus hot water.

Does this sound practical? and wht should be my next step??

Following your description of the house I think air to air is the correct choice. You can get “multi split” systems where one outdoor unit supports up to 5 indoor ones. With some, all units in use must heat or cool but not a mix, others allow a mix. I am not familiar with particular models. There are models that allow the sacrifice of one or more internal units in exchange for a water heater.

If you have a controlled ventilation strategy in the house you should be able to heat/cool many more than 5 rooms with 5 units.

There are systems which duct air from a central exchanger but as you need one room extra warm that doesn’t seem sensible.

Having a gas boiler just for hot water seems over the top. An immersion heater should be adequate.

As regards the south facing and overheating rooms, you need some shading to that side of the house. At least the windows and maybe the walls. If you can reduce the insolation you will reduce overheating and the cost of cooling them.

I’d agree with Tim’s comment, except for the last section.

Overheating (and the need to be warmer in winter) suggests a need to improve insulation, not reduce it. Insulation works just as well keeping heat out as it does keeping it in. Like Tim says, a shading strategy would also help reduce overheating (blinds closed during the day to keep heat out, windows open in the morning and evening to take advantage of the cooler air).

Depending on your wife’s condition, you may be able to get financial help with the cost of external/internal wall insulation and possibly with changing your gas boiler for a heat pump of some sorts (air to air, or air to water as you have radiators). Have a look at the Energy Company Obligation grant scheme, but do check in with the forum members about the suggestions they put to you, and check out the suggested contractor to see the quality of their previous work.

Read again!

Reduce insolation. NOT insulation. :man_facepalming:t3:

I have constructed a narrow pergola along my south wall. It shades windows and wall in summer, when the sun is high and allows the low winter sun to pass underneath.

For this to work the “roof” slats need to run east/west. If they are north/south the sun will just shine between them.

The pergola it not attached to the house, so no thermal bridges.

It doesn’t help with upstairs but that isn’t an issue for a bungalow.