Panasonic partners with Together Housing to deliver sustainable heating solutions


Panasonic has partnered with social housing provider, Together Housing, to deliver sustainable heating solutions to over 1,200 properties across the North of England. To date, Together Housing has switched hundreds of homes from gas boilers to Panasonic J Series Aquarea Monobloc air-to-water heat pumps. This year, the team is scheduled to retrofit a further 750 homes with many more to follow.

Panasonic is providing 5, 7 or 9 kW units to a range of 1 to 3 bedroom properties, primarily located in Yorkshire and Lancashire. Together Housing is one of the North’s largest social landlords, owning and managing over 39,000 homes. Working in collaboration for over two years, Together Housing and Panasonic’s shared net zero goals are the foundations for this partnership.

A fabric first approach

With a fabric first approach, each home has an initial survey and ventilation assessment to check the home is suitable and if any additional insulation is required. This ensures that the homes gain maximum benefit from the energy efficiency of the Panasonic heat pump once installed.

Commenting on the advantages of switching to a Panasonic heat pump, one tenant, Eva, commented, “After only 6 weeks, I can already see a reduction in my energy bills.”

Another tenant, Shannon, spoke on the ease of fitting and operating the new heat pump. She said “The communication from the installers was very good as they kept me in the loop and explained each bit as they fitted it. When it was all finished, they showed me how to use it very clearly. The system is very easy to manage. There’s a Panasonic controller on the wall that has a timer, it’s much easier to set the temperature than my old gas boiler and the pump outside isn’t noisy at all.” Shannon recommends other residents have an air source heat pump fitted if it’s offered. She added, “I’ve already told my neighbours.” 

Go Green Together

Ensuring support throughout this transition period, Panasonic is working with Together Housing on an education initiative, ‘Go Green Together’, a portal providing learning resources for residents. Guidebooks explaining energy bills, meter readings, available tariffs, smart meters, setting tenants’ heating, and financial support are available online. Tenant Liaison Officer’s (TLO’s)  are on hand to help with any questions and support with the behavioural change required for the transition. All residents are offered a standard thermostat and programmer for easy-to-understand controllability of their heating system, in addition to the support team’s remote smart diagnostic tool.

Jose Alves, Regional Director for Panasonic UK, Ireland, and the Netherlands said, “Panasonic and Together Housing are setting the roadmap to net zero, but we are also building it as we go. As leaders in this commitment, we recognise the importance of a holistic approach to deliver energy efficient buildings and to provide residents with a collaborative solution for improved comfort and performance.”

Forward-thinking Executive Director of Property at Together Housing, Patrick Berry, initiated this approach, recognising the change that is required in housing to reduce carbon emissions from heating consumption. The project is entirely supported by a top-to-bottom system, with Board Members and Leadership alike determined to demonstrate the transformation this project can achieve to the entire housing sector.

Patrick Berry, said, “Moving towards energy efficient and greener social housing is vital to ensure we can provide a sustainable future for all our residents. As well as improving the energy performance of our existing housing stock and helping our most vulnerable residents to live in warmer, more comfortable homes, we’re also leading the way to deliver more environmentally friendly communities across the north of England. Panasonic’s support and response to challenges has been second to none. We plan to share our lessons learnt with other housing associations so they can follow in our example.”

Delivery Manager at Together Housing, Gemma Voaden, added, “We are moving everything towards net zero as an everyday action, not simply a one-off principle, and Panasonic is helping make this transition much easier. The newly installed Panasonic heat pumps are providing evidence of healthy homes, with lower energy costs and proving to be more energy efficient when compared to other heat pumps available currently on the market.”

Lobbying to improve efficiency

One of the biggest stumbling blocks preventing fast progression is the need to gain approval for heat pump installation from the area's Distribution Network Operators (DNO). This process slows down installs not pre-approved on the DNO database. Together Housing has been lobbying the government to improve this process to ensure each installation can be delivered effectively. The Panasonic Aquarea J Series 5, 7 and 9kW are pre-approved for Connect & Notify, allowing for a faster and more straightforward installation process.

Panasonic Aquarea heat pump

The Panasonic J Series High Performance heat pump boasts an A+++ Energy Class, achieving average water outlet temperatures of 35°C and maximum output temperatures of 60°C. Bespoke software for maximum efficiency delivers low output temperatures. Panasonic cloud control and service with an easy-to-use remote controller for end user accessibility enables a holistic solution to heating. The Panasonic units are available in a range of sizes from  5, 7 and 9 kW, with an internal domestic hot water tank and external unit for ease of installation.

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