Luxury Okanogan villa pairs efficiency with comfort in West Kelowna



West Kelowna, British Columbia - A blend of innovative technology and European design techniques will help reduce energy consumption at a luxury retreat in the heart of British Columbia’s wine country. The 16,000-square-foot villa situated on the banks of Lake Okanogan is designed to deliver the utmost comfort to occupants while maintaining high efficiency standards. Tamas Hydronic, a heating and cooling system developer which worked on the water supply, heating and cooling systems designs for the building, supplied 42 Grundfos circulators and one submersible constant pressure system to meet the customer’s needs.

“We’ve been supplying Grundfos products for over 25 years,” said Tom Hermann, president of Tamas Hydronic. “We specified Grundfos because we like to associate ourselves with quality products that we believe in.”

Hermann, who spearheaded the project, used European design techniques in both the radiant floor heating and fan coil heating and cooling systems to help reduce energy consumption and deliver superior system control and flexibility.

In North America, radiant floor heating and fan coil heating systems are commonly designed with one large boiler and a few large circulator pumps. This method can lead to inefficiency as a sizeable portion of the system must be active in order to provide heat in only a small section of the building. In European designs, several small boilers are used in conjunction with smaller circulating pumps to break the system into multiple zones. A single zone can then be activated when a specific portion of the building requires more heat, reducing energy consumption and ensuring temperature control is tailored to the home owner.

“When you use a large traditional boiler you have to run it at a higher temperature range, usually between 82OC and 98OC,” explains Hermann “Alternatively, if you utilize several small condensing boilers, you will reduce energy consumption as these boilers operate most efficiently between 54OC and 60OC. You also reduce energy loss from steam exhaust and have several backup heating systems should there be an issue with a boiler.”

In the two-story villa, Hermann designed the radiant floor heating system with 16 different zones. Four small condensing boilers provide hot water for the system, with each boiler supplying a primary loop and four secondary half-inch Pex-type piping loops. A Grundfos UPS 26-99 standard 3-speed circulator was used on each primary loop to provide constant circulation between the boiler and secondary loops. A variable speed ALPHA circulator was then positioned on each secondary loop to push water through each heating zone as required.

The Grundfos ALPHA features an innovative permanent magnet motor design and AUTOADAPT capabilities which adjust pump speed to meet system demands. That means if the home is not occupied or visitors prefer a cooler indoor environment, the ALPHA will reduce motor speed and flow, saving energy and delivering optimal comfort. Based on these innovative design features and the duty point of the application, the ALPHA is expected to consume 40 to 50 percent less energy than a standard circulator in the same system.* This energy reduction translates into an operating cost of approximately $54 per ALPHA pump per year compared with a standard circulator which would cost approximately $306. Considering the highest design point of this system, the use of the Grundfos ALPHA pumps will save the home owner approximately $4,032 in electricity costs per year.**

In addition to the radiant floor heating system, Tamas Hydronic also supplied a four-pipe fan coil heating and cooling system for the building. European design techniques were also utilized in this system, with two small condensing boilers feeding four heating zones and three 2-stage chillers with HBX control providing water to seven cooling zones.

“In certain areas of the home, large windows and high ceilings meant that the British Thermal Unit (BTU) output from the radiant floor heating system would cause the floor temperature to exceed maximum building standards in order to maintain optimal temperature on unusually cool days. To ensure that our clients received the highest level of comfort, we overlapped a fan coil heating system with the radiant floor heating systems in these specific areas,” said Hermann.


Eleven MAGNA 32-100 circulators were installed to push water though different segments of the four fan coil heating zones. When additional heating in a zone is required, the MAGNA pump will turn on and adjust motor speed to deliver desired system flow. Thirteen MAGNA 32-100 GEO pumps were also brought in on a special order from Europe to pump the 4OC to 8OC liquid in the cold water loops. Ten of the MAGNA 32-100 GEO pumps were installed on the system’s secondary loops while three additional will be used to circulate cold water on the primary loops of the chillers.

The permanent magnet motor design, high flow capacity and variable speed operation of both MAGNA models made the pumps an ideal choice for the application. Based on the duty point of the system, the MAGNA 32-100 and MAGNA 32-100 GEO are expected to reduce energy consumption by 50 to 63 percent when compared to a standard circulator in the same system.*

To supply the villa with water, a Grundfos 10SQE-130 constant pressure system with a CU301 controller and 18L stainless-steel pressure tank was installed. The system will provide the home with up to 114 liters (30 gallons) of water per minute which will be purified through a UV filter and reverse osmosis system. The constant pressure system was selected for the application to ensure that the home owner would receive consistent water pressure even when multiple taps are in use.  The CU301 controller uses a sensor to detect when the flow requirement of the system has changed and automatically adjusts the pump’s speed to increase or decrease flow. This reduces energy consumption as the pump is not running at a high, fixed speed when system demands are low.

The domestic hot water system in the villa uses two additional ALPHA pumps, four UPS 15-58 circulators and two condensing boilers to heat and deliver hot water for showers, laundry and cooking. Six bronze UPS 26-99 circulators and three condensing boilers were also installed to provide warm water to the pool, hot-tub and to increase flow and pressure for the customer’s water feature system.

Home owner comfort and energy efficiency were the main objectives when Tamas Hydronic worked on the designs for the villa’s water supply, heating and cooling systems. Grundfos products will help to meet these goals by delivering outstanding energy savings, customized control and reliable operation.

The villa is expected to be ready for occupation in the fall of 2014.

*Energy savings calculations are based on empirical data not specific measurements from the application. At the time this case was written, specific application measurements were not yet available.

** ALPHA operation cost estimates are based on the highest design point for this system (based at 11 GPM at 6 ft. head). Cost was calculated based on energy rates in the area at the time the case was published ($0.0752 per KWH). For detailed information on how the energy savings were calculated please contact


Energy efficiency in residential home water supply and heating and cooling systems.


West Kelowna, British Columbia


System Designer - Tamas Hydronic



If you need a similar solution, please contact us for further information.


(905) 829-9533


If you need a similar solution, please contact us for further information.


(905) 829-9533
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