Heatrae Sadia point-of-use electric water heaters selected for Scotland’s first Passivhaus-certified Primary School

Riverside Primary School Exterior

Heatrae Sadia point-of-use electric water heaters are helping deliver exemplar energy-efficiency standards at Riverside Primary, Scotland’s first Passivhaus-certified Primary School. Heatrae Sadia is part of Baxi.

The new multi-million-pound school building brings together North Muirton and Balhousie primary schools, providing modern learning space for 500 children with additional provision for a nursery and additional support needs (ASN). The project is part of Perth & Kinross Council's ongoing capital programme of school upgrades and improvements through hub East Central Scotland Limited (hubco) to enhance the environment for learning and teaching across the area.

Passivhaus buildings provide a high level of occupant comfort all year round using very little energy for heating, hot water and cooling, making them truly energy efficient, environmentally friendly and economical to run.

BakerHicks Motherwell, who were appointed by Perth & Kinross Council to provide mechanical and electrical design services for principal contractor Robertson Tayside, were instrumental in forming the energy strategy for the new school building.

Riverside Primary School

David Coulter, Associate Engineer and Certified Passivhaus Designer at BakerHicks said: “The hot water strategy was one of the main challenges when designing the system as we needed to avoid large scale energy usage. We wanted to explore using all-electric point-of-use solutions that would only generate energy when required, for example during break or lunch times. So we asked Baxi for help with the solution.”

Baxi’s public health technical sales and specification team, headed up by Stephen Lynch, worked with David to identify the selection of Heatrae Sadia water heaters – including Multipoint, Multipoint Eco, Hotflo, Aquaheat as well as a Megaflo Eco cylinder – that would efficiently meet the hot water demand across the building.

“We had used Heatrae Sadia products before and were familiar with their reputation for high-quality, robust performance,” continued David. “A key benefit of these water heaters is that the units are sized, thereby providing more flexibility to meet the required volume. But equally importantly is the excellent technical and aftersales support that we know we can expect from the Baxi team – and which proved invaluable on this project.”

All certified Passivhaus buildings must undergo a rigorous quality assurance compliance process that includes tests to ensure the targets are met. Certification is only issued by the independent Passivhaus certifier, in this instance WARM, if the defined criteria are achieved.

“It’s an exacting process,” David explained. “We needed to supply detailed calculations and evidence relating to the energy values of the selected technologies. And this is where we really relied on Baxi for support. They were great, working closely with us to provide all the information required for certification and ready to help at every stage of the project.”

With Passivhaus certification now successfully achieved and Riverside Primary School due to open its doors to pupils in 2023, Perth & Kinross Council has achieved its commitment to enhance education provision for children north of Perth and taken a step closer to its net zero carbon ambitions.

Baxi’s Stephen Lynch said, “The very low heat losses of our Heatrae Sadia products were a key component in the overall project. We are extremely proud to have played a part in this ground-breaking Passivhaus primary school.”

The architect, lead consultant and Passivhaus designer was Architype, the project manager was hub East Central Scotland, the principal contractor was Robertson Tayside, and the M&E installing contactor was FES in Stirling.