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Heat Interface Units

What is a Heat Interface Unit?

Heat Interface Units (HIUs), sometimes known as ‘heat boxes’, control the central heating and domestic hot water to individual dwellings within a multi-development site such as apartments, flats and large social housing schemes.

two heat interface units

The HIU acts as a bridge between the central boiler system of the development and the individual systems of each dwelling. The unit facilitates the heating and domestic hot water across the separate central and individual systems by using one or more plate heat exchangers to transfer energy from a fluid within the central system to the fluid within the individual systems. This is referred to as indirect heating.

Historically, in sites of multiple dwellings, such as social housing, individual heating systems with combi boilers or electric heaters were installed in each property. However, these were associated with various temperature control issues, providing poor quality of care and increased maintenance, as well as cost and environmental issues regarding the amount of CO2 produced per dwelling.

But the use of a centralised plant using Heat Interface Units significantly reduces all of these issues, allowing for the amount consumed by an individual property to be recorded and billed accordingly. It also allows developers to meet the increasingly demanding targets being set on new build developments by the government.

Why Choose a Heat Interface Unit?

In comparison to a traditional method of heating a home through an individual heating system like a combi boiler, a Heat Interface Unit provides instant heating and hot water to each home within a building, or group of buildings, through a centralised group or district heating system. This allows all the occupants within the property to receive temperature control which is not only on-demand but environmentally friendly too due to the use of renewable energy sources to power the heat source.

Because each property is no longer in need of an individual heating and hot water supply, the building designers and engineers have greater room for manoeuvre when drawing up plans for a new development. In turn, this then leads to substantial savings during the eventual construction of the properties.