The thermostatic valves, mechanical thermoregulation devices that are installed on the radiators, allow a distribution of heat between the various rooms of a home, automatically excluding the radiator once it has reached the set temperature.
When will it be mandatory to install thermostatic valves?
According to Directive 2012/27 / EU for energy efficiency, by 31 December 2016, it will be mandatory to install thermostatic valves with heat meters in condominiums with central heating on each radiator; failure to install by the deadline provides for high penalties of between 500 and 2,500 euros, depending on the provisions of the various Regions.
Owners of buildings with independent heating are exempt from this obligation. Even buildings with technical impediments, such as a radiant system that is now obsolete, too expensive and complex to adapt, may be exempt from the obligation
With the’Installation of thermostatic valves a saving in fuel consumption of between 10% and 30% is estimated.
Thermostatic valves, installation costs
The installation of the valves has a rather high cost, on average 120 euros per heater: this expense includes the cost of adapting the circulation pumps of the condominium system from fixed flow to variable flow. The adaptation of heat pumps is an essential intervention in order not to invalidate the advantages brought by thermostatic valves.
To give an example, therefore, for an 80 square meter apartment with 6 heaters, the cost could be around 1,055 euros.
With the installation of the thermostatic valves, this will result in a change in the condominium regulations and in the way in which heating costs are distributed: in fact, in condominiums with centralized systems, the costs will be divided according to a specific thousandth table.
The apartments located on the intermediate floors will benefit from it, while those on the top floor, on the first with the floor in contact with unheated rooms or those adjacent to uninhabited and therefore unheated accommodation, will have higher consumption.
In order to avoid unequal treatment, it will be necessary to insert adjustment coefficients in the cost breakdown tables, which take account of these differences.
How to optimize the use of thermostatic valves?
To pay off the expense faster, you will need to change some usual bad habits.
The factors that contribute most to the increase in consumption are the room temperature and heat loss due to drafts or obsolete systems.
If the temperature of an environment is lowered from 21 ° C to 20 ° C, we will have a reduction in consumption of 7% with a consequent annual saving of about 84 euros.