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Vphase Voltage Optimiser

Fitting a VPhase unit should improve the overall energy efficiency of your home. Voltage optimisation will work throughout the day to lower and regulate the voltage coming in to your house, resulting in reduced energy consumption, fewer carbon emissions and lower electricity bills.

Whilst the VPhase does not currently contribute to EPCs, we are seeking inclusion as a priority. Despite this, cutting around 10% off your electricity bills is not something to be overlooked.

With all electrical devices and appliances having to work across the EU range of voltage (207V to 253V) since the early 90s, many appliance will actually work more efficiently at the stable, lower 220V that the VPhase typically optimises to – meaning greater efficiencies and potentially prolonging the life of your electrical equipment.

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The Technology Explained

Across Europe the agreed statutory range for voltage is 207V to 253V with the UK voltage typically being 245V. Household appliances must be designed to operate satisfactorily within the European statutory range, however, many of the appliances we use regularly will use less energy at lower voltages.

The VPhase unit reduces and stabilises the voltage at the property to a level within statutory limits but below the voltage that is usually supplied by power companies, in the UK the VPhase output is typically 220V. This eliminates over voltage, which is a costly and unnecessary waste of energy and ensures many electrical appliances use less electricity and cost less to run, as well as cutting carbon emissions.

As a result homeowners can achieve immediate and significant energy savings for the whole home with a single VPhase fitted to the consumer unit (fuse box). Based on our back to back tests, on appliances such as fridges and freezers a VPhase unit can deliver a massive saving of around 17%. VPhase also delivers savings on lighting, washing machines, tumble driers, dishwashers, televisions and a whole range of other electrical appliances.

What Savings can I make?

The voltage supplied to your home or business needs to vary to ensure that the distribution network works effectively, offering the best supply to all users at all times. Across Europe the agreed statutory range for voltages is based on 230V +/-10% (207V to 253V). In the UK our voltages have historically been higher and whilst actual levels will vary during the day they typically average at around 245V.

The majority of appliances operate more efficiently at lower voltage (but still within the European statutory range). Voltage Optimisation is the control of voltage supplied to appliances to a set level (usually 220V). Presented below are example energy savings achieved in VPhase testing and based upon 245V to 220V voltage reduction.*

Appliances with motors and pumps
A rated freezer = 17% energy saving
A rated refrigerator = 16% energy saving
3 speed central heating pump = 15% to 18% energy saving

CFL lighting = 11% energy saving
Incandescent bulb = 15% energy saving
Low voltage halogen spot lights = 15% energy saving

Consumer electronics
Results for consumer electronics vary widely, examples are given below:
DAB radio = 5% energy saving
DECT cordless phone base station = 30% energy saving
ADSL modem and wireless router = 5% energy saving
Personal Computer = 4% energy saving
Hi-Fi = 13% energy saving

Electric heating
Closed loop (thermostatically controlled) heating will make no energy savings through the application of voltage optimisation. Reducing the voltage applied to an ohmic heating element will reduce the heat output from that element and the power drawn by that element however the element will remain on longer to achieve the same heating effect (and therefore consume the same amount of energy).

Whole house saving
There are many variables to determine the overall energy savings, however savings of between £50 and £135 a year off electricity bills have been demonstrated. If this were achieved in every house within the UK this would be the equivalent CO2 reduction of taking 2.3 million cars off the road every year.

It’s all very well seeing these fantastic claims of energy efficiency and saving 10% off your electricity bills, but how can you know what’s true and what’s not? Actually, there are some technologies on the market that drastically over-state their claims – but here at VPhase we’ve gone to great lengths to substantiate the energy and CO2 savings that can be achieved with the VPhase domestic voltage optimisation device.

*Successfully completed trials were conducted with a North West Social Housing Provider (Great Places Housing Group), with the results being independently analysed by EA Technology. The full press release can be viewed (see our News items) – although a quick summary demonstrated whole-house CO2 savings of 3.6% and energy savings of 9.0%. (Savings will obviously vary depending on the housing type and energy use profile of the house the device is installed in).

*Working with Scottish and Southern Electric, VPhase devices have been installed in 50 homes with a view to calculating the lifetime CO2 saving potential of the device. The results have again been independently analysed by EA Technology and are demonstrating lifetime savings of around 4 tonnes of CO2. This evidence has been passed to Ofgem for their corroboration so the device can qualify for the CERT scheme and we expect results to be released in Q4 2010.

*Case studies – we’re keen to develop a range of case studies, testimonials and general user reviews from anyone that has had a VPhase fitted. One of the obstacles we have to overcome is the fact the device is a fit-and-forget product; it goes on making the savings silently in the background, so people simply forget it’s there! However, we are continuing to collate a growing range of evidence, some of which can be seen below...

Case Study A
Mr & Mrs H - 5 bedroom detached house
Family of 5
Gas central heating, gas hob and electric oven
Typical Voltage Reduction of 8.9% VPhase saves £75 per annum*

Case Study B
Mr & Mrs S - 4 bedroom detached house
Family of 5
Gas central heating, gas hob and electric oven
Typical Voltage Reduction of 7.1% VPhase saves £82 per annum*

Case Study C
Mr & Mrs B - 4 bedroom detached house
Family of 5
Gas central heating and electric oven
Typical voltage Reduction of 10.3% VPhase saves £135 per annum*

Housing Association Trial Success for VPhase

Following a three month social housing trial with Great Places Housing Group, independently analysed results show energy savings of between 8.5% and 9.0% and estimated yearly CO₂ savings of up to 180kg per property. This equates to an average 3.6% of a households’ annual CO2 emissions and importantly, a significant proportion of many housing association’s overall CO2 reduction targets.

The trial, which took place between February and May 2010, saw the low-cost VPhase unit installed in a number of tenants’ homes to monitor its ease of installation as well as independently measure its energy and carbon saving capability. Tenants involved in the trial were able to benefit from the immediate and significant money and energy savings the product delivers, without having to change their lifestyle of electricity supplier.

Matthew Harrison, deputy chief executive and director of development at Great Places Housing Group comments: “The results are very encouraging and we will now look at the viability of installing VPhase units in more of our houses.”

With an estimated 4 million homes in England, the social housing market is an extremely important sector. These results confirm that the VPhase unit will not only help social housing providers meet stringent carbon reduction targets, it will also help social housing become more affordable for the people that need it the most.

The low-cost VPhase unit uses voltage optimisation technology to reduce and stabilise the incoming voltage to homes and manage it to a stable level, normally 220V in the UK. The result is considerable reductions to electricity costs, reduced wasted energy and lower carbon emissions. It can be easily fitted by a qualified electrician, requires no maintenance and will instantly save energy across a wide range of appliances throughout the home.
The VPhase unit is fitted next to the fuse box and operates on socket outlets and lighting circuits where it can maximise savings.  It is best fitted whenever a new fuse box is fitted, adding value for the electrician and the homeowner.

Great Places Housing Group Trial: Recorded data from several properties that had been fitted with a VPhase VX1. EA Techology has analysed the electricity consumption data for these properties, for the period between 16th February and 29th May 2010. The electrical energy savings over this period ranged, for these properties, from 8.5% to 9.0% (average 8.7%). Estimated yearly whole house carbon savings ranged from 160 to 199kg (average 183kg). This level of carbon saving equates to 3.6% of total household carbon emissions and represents a low cost solution to meeting typically one third of housing association’s overall CO2 reduction targets.

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