Highly Commended

South East Highly Commended

Name: Josh Tappin
Business: Paine Manwaring Ltd

Please tell us about a project you are particularly proud of – what was the problem and how did you solve it for the customer? 

Every job I do I am incredibly proud of. For this particular job it was a three-story new build and I fitted the entire heating, water and drainage system throughout the house. This included underfloor heating, a new boiler, a new hot water system with secondary return and plumbing throughout the building.

The area the building it in is very built up and the cold mains pipe comes in at 32mm MDPE and then splits into 6 different properties meaning that due to high demand, the water pressure was not great from the cold tap and future proofing.

There were 3 bathrooms, all located on the second floor. So, I wanted to ensure that the pressure would be constant  in each bathroom, even if water was drawn off from each area of the house. To do this, I installed a booster pump in combination with an unvented cylinder for the hot water, which drastically improved the water pressure in each bathroom. I chose a booster pump and Megaflo unvented cylinder because it created consistently high-water pressure throughout the property. It was also the best option to suit the space, as a gravity fed system would have needed storage tanks at the highest point in the loft and as this property was a new build, it did not have any attic space available.

I installed a water softener as the water in the house was incredibly hard, due to the property being located close to the Downs.  Having hard water in a residential property commonly causes a build-up of scale and limescale, meaning a limescale can build on glass wear, and shower doors etc. Installing a water softener eliminated this problem whilst also further protecting all the components of the unvented cylinder by reducing limescale build up, which would give the unvented cylinder a longer life and reduce the need for repair parts, saving the homeowners from having to purchase a replacement for many years. Softer water is also much better for your skin, and treating my customers to a little luxury never goes a miss!

I also installed an underfloor heating system in the property, which was important to the homeowners as they wanted to be more environmentally conscious. Underfloor heating systems have a large heat emitter area which allows more heat exchange than a traditional radiator, which might only occupy one or two square metres on your wall, in comparison to spanning the entire floor area. This means that underfloor heating requires a lower heat output to work efficiently, reducing carbon emissions.

Underfloor heating is a radiant heating system and therefore allows heat to be distributed evenly and consistently around the room, meaning it provides optimum thermal comfort. The fact that it is installed under the floor also meant that I was able to optimise space for the homeowner, as it takes up less room than convectional heating systems, such as radiators, and produces better air quality.

A final, but critical, benefit of installing underfloor heating in this property was that it can be used to heat a specific room or zone, rather than the entire house. For this particular homeowner this was important as it will reduce the amount of energy required to heat the building meaning that it is more energy and cost efficient in the long-term. For a three-story property such as this one, this provided a big benefit to the homeowners.

Which products did you select for the job and why? 

I chose a Worcester Bosch boiler due to the variety of changes on that boiler from an open system, seal system, S plan, Y Plan ect etc… This was a great benefit allowing me to have much more freedom and control over how I fitted the pipework compared to if I installed a standard combination boiler. They also offer a great guarantee and great breakdown/technical service.

I chose a 300ltr Megaflo unvented cylinder for the hot water side. I love this product as it comes standard with a great guarantee, not only that but I also love working on these cylinders. I find that when installing an unvented cylinder pipework can sometimes come across messy but after fitting a load of these I have found the perfect way to pipe these up neatly. Also adding isolation valves  and drain off valves (Prefer using sludge valves on the cold inlet to drain quicker if need be) makes life 100 times easier for maintenance.

I chose a Dutypoint cold water booster as it contains a Scooba tank that stores a significant amount of water for when it is needed and can also give a 3 bar pressure boost when required. I had previously installed the same booster in properties similar to this and linked up 2 or 3 of them to keep on the demand of water usage and found it works really well plus it’s highly reliable. I also find that due to its simplicity it only has one moving part requiring less maintenance.

I chose the BWT water softener as it really complimented the system I had put in place. It gave a variety of choices as to how soft we wanted the water to be and also gives handy reminders when it needs servicing, making my customers’ lives a lot easier! I also find that it is really accessible when it comes to putting the salt in compared to other similar products. Another benefit is that it is quite small, which helped me to optimise the space available.

All the products I chose really complimented each other and I felt confident recommending and installing them for my customer. They are also, in my opinion, the highest quality products on the market.

Tell us what was different or unique about this job? Why does it stand out? 

This was one of 6 x £2.6m houses I had done on the estate. It was my first one and really stood out because of the great results for the customer. It also stood out because I was able to complete it from start to finish, and the customer trusted me enough to give me freedom when making the decisions that I thought were best.

For example, I was given drawings from a heating designer of the hot and water pipework which I didn’t think was the best option, they were really vague and the designer had not anticipated other objects obstructing the lines. So, I redesigned the plans and the customer trusted me to go ahead with my design which really showcased my work and skills in the best way possible. I also made my own recommendations on the products that we used to achieve the best results, such as the booster and water softener, which the builder was really happy with.

Overall, it was great to be able to work with a construction team that allowed me to make my own recommendations on what was best for the customer and I was able to showcase my knowledge and skills in order to achieve this.

And finally, tell us what the end result was for your customer? 

The customer was incredibly happy. The mini plant room was a room that they were proud of and they now love to show people the room as part of the house tour, which I thought was a lovely comment. I worked hard to make sure that the room was easily accessible, that the pipework was really neat with high quality bends and lagging, and put in the extra effort to clean the pipes with Brasso making them really aesthetically pleasing. I feel it is important to take pride in every area of my work, even things that some may think their customers won’t look at, as I want to make sure they are almost a work of art! I also labelled and colour coded each lever valve to explain what shuts off – and where – to add an extra level of ease for my customer.

By installing underfloor heating, I saved my customer money as it is more energy and cost efficient due to the fact that it can heat up isolated areas of the property rather than the whole building.

I also paid extremely close attention to detail throughout the install, for example, I installed lever/isolation valves to isolate sections of the pipework throughout the install so that for future repairs it would be less labour to drain a system down and instead isolate what they need to work on. it only takes an hour rather than half a day, reducing repair costs for my customer in the future.