Henderson company pumps it up

Hot Water Heat Pumps

After more than 30 years engineering quality products, Henderson company Hot Water Heat Pumps Ltd is poised to produce new technology with unprecedented industrial capacity – thanks to expert help from ATEED’s West Area Office.

The company is capable of building industrial strength commercial water heaters, chillers and ventilation systems for customers such as schools, rest homes, and large building owners – with applications such as swimming pools, under floor heating, aqua culture, and commercial hot water.

Hot Water Heat Pumps director Kevin Trigg says Grant Hemmings, ATEED West’s research and development (R&D) advisor, has been instrumental in getting the company to the point where it’s ready to test its two new large units (5.5m by 2.2m) – one with a modular design – which can chill water to 1°C or heat it to at least 55°C.

The giant new design called the ‘Monolith’ has tandem compressor two-mode technology – but with one set of pipes – resulting in less heat loss, greater capacity, and a much more efficient system. Customers would often need to install two or more competitor products to attempt similar capacity.

Kevin says he has already received a number of inquiries about the new large-scale heat pumps

Grant Hemmings worked with Hot Water Heat Pumps to help it understand and successfully apply for more than $100,000 in government R&D grants from Callaghan Innovation which could help the company make its vision a reality.

Kevin says: “Getting in touch with ATEED has worked out incredibly well. This project has not only resulted in new technologies for us, it also proved that we can make heat pumps on this scale – more than 300kw power output – that engineering consultants didn’t believe we could do.”

He says Grant was easy to work with and helped the company through the daunting grant application paper work.

“To get a grant was really exciting for us, because all of our past R&D has been off our own bat, we have never been given a cent.”

The company is a family business started by Kevin’s father Don in the 1970s – who initially built swimming pool heaters in his garage. The company was incorporated in 1982 and now has a 1200 sq m factory in Henderson, and a 19-strong team – some of whom have been with the business for nearly 20 years.

Kevin says the company prides itself on producing long-lasting and reliable units in an industry where lower-prices competitors often prove to have a short life span.

The successful production of the new large-scale technology has been accompanied by a strategic marketing shift for Hot Water Heat Pumps.

Rather than be directly involved in selling to end users, the company’s primary market for the new pumps is the consultants and engineers who specify the equipment for its end use. That will leave it free to focus on its design and manufacturing strengths, rather than selling.

The company already exports its pool pumps to places such as South Africa and Chile. Kevin says the future opportunities are unlimited: “While New Zealand is our primary market at the moment, we definitely have plans to export the ‘Monolith’ technology once it has been developed and refined further.”


Speak to ATEED West area office about how R&D funding could help your business succeed. Phone (09) 354 0068.