Heating and Air-conditioning

Heating and air-conditioning for the Algarve including underfloor heating and solid fuel stoves as well as solar hot water systems.

Air Conditioning

The majority villas and apartments in the Algarve are equipped with air conditioning equipment, which obviously makes life nice: cooling, filtering, and dehumidifying the air we breathe. Choosing the correct combination of air conditioning and heating equipment can be quite a task since you need to take into account factors like initial cost, energy efficiency rating and other factors before you buy one. Capacity of the unit is an important factor to consider, as you need equipment the is not too small or large for your home to be cooled or heated. We can can make the necessary load calculations for you.

Space heating

When winter sets in, we all need to keep warm even here in the Algarve. It’s a peculiar climate in the winter, quite warm but damp, sometimes windy and with frosts and low night time temperatures in the hills. The daily variation in temperature can be up to 20 C.

As the Algarve heating season is quite short, full central heating is rarely an economic solution. The heating capability of air conditioning units can provide a quick easy and relatively cheap (compared to electric heating) source of heating with the advantage of cooling in the summer. We supply and fit Mitsubishi Inverter air source heating and cooling systems at reasonable cost.

In the lounge it is nice to have some form of radiant heat to compliment the convected heat of the AC unit. A woodstove fits the bill beautifully here with all the charm of the visible flame. Modern units are also able to heat your water and even run radiators and heat your water in winter in an integrated system where heat is stored in “thermal stores” to be used for many hours after the fire has gone out.

For the ultimate in easy luxury there is wet or dry underfloor heating. The electric variety is the cheapest to install and has the least maintenance but costs more to run but can work out economic for a property that is rarely used in the winter. The wet variety requires a boiler or can be run from a sophisticated solar system or woodstove that also provides your hot water. We have been fitting these systems for many years and are happy to provide you with a quote after an in depth study of your needs.

Hot water

You’re also going to need to heat your hot water and here the high insolation of the Algarve sun, even in winter makes solar hot water heating a no brainer. The usual system, and the simplest, is the roof mounted thermosyphon system. Both the panel and tank are mounted on the roof. The tank has optional mains powered back up for when (rarely) there has not been enough sun. There are also pumped systems where the tank is mounted elsewhere and integrated systems with more panels and a “thermal store” which can also run underfloor heating and be combined with a stove back boiler.

For simpler needs we also fit the gas fired hot water heaters common in Portuguese properties as well as the Immersion heater type. We are also often called out to swap gas systems for immersion heaters in rental properties.

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