Warming Things Up Where It’s Really Needed

Sunshine Renewable Energy
Written by Jessica Ferlaino

Sunshine Renewable Energy is a family-owned contractor that provides innovative renewable energy solutions for homes and businesses in Nova Scotia’s Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM). For 10 years, Sunshine has executed on its mission to educate the market on the advantages of sustainable energy offerings like heat pumps (both ducted and ductless), and solar and electrical service upgrades, while improving system performance for its customers, saving them money, and benefiting the environment in the process.

Sales and Operations Manager Ryan Graves describes Sunshine as, “an electrification contractor. That’s probably the best way to explain it, though it sounds a bit ridiculous,” he laughs. The term nonetheless encapsulates exactly what it is that Sunshine brings to the market. And, for Sunshine, the timing was right.

As consumers and shareholders alike have become increasingly conscious of their carbon footprints, there is a greater willingness to invest in innovative energy solutions: technologies like heat pumps which are more efficient than conventional fossil fuel-powered technologies and happen to be Sunshine’s specialty.

Leading the electrification charge
Sunshine Renewable Energy evolved out of a direct response to changes in the market, particularly the electrification of the economy, including the introduction of electric vehicles and the need for related infrastructure. Graves shared some insight into the founding and evolution of the company.

“In the beginning phases,” he says, “heat pumps were a new adoption and electrification was just coming around, so not like it is today. The biggest catalyst for our growth right now is a lot of the programs and rebates and zero percent financing that is available from the federal government. That’s injected a lot of fuel on the fire, particularly in the heat pump market.”

A heat pump is used for heating and cooling and requires only one system for both functions. In the cooler months, it can pull heat from a source (air, or geothermal energy from ground or water), transferring it indoors to where it is needed, and in the warmer months, it can pull heat from the air inside to cool the home. The heat can also be used for secondary systems such as hot water production.

This is why an influx of government funding has become available to customers: there are tangible benefits to the adoption of new technologies like heat pumps, electric thermal storage, and the like.

As Graves notes, “There are significant savings to be had. That’s why there is such a big push. If heat pumps weren’t the most efficient way of heating the home the federal government wouldn’t incentivize people to put them in.”

Nova Scotia’s best
In only a decade, Sunshine Renewable Energy has become the premier heat pump installation contractor in Nova Scotia thanks to its commitment to its customers’ outcomes. As a leader in the ducted and ductless heat pump categories, much of the company’s reputation for quality is rooted in the fact that it has complete control over project delivery.

“The biggest differentiator with us is we do not subcontract anything, so everything is done in-house: electrical, refrigeration, HVAC, sheet metal, all of the trades, as well as the after-sales [support], which is probably the most important. We have a dedicated service team, dedicated service manager, dedicated booking team, and dedicated customer service,” explains Graves.

“This is all done under one roof together with safety and compliance as well as our human resources department. It’s all done under one roof to make sure the quality is there. Employees work under the safest conditions possible, and everybody is being pushed to further their training and education certificates.”

Sunshine has invested in its resources and facilities to be able to guarantee a job well done on any project, regardless of its size and scope, an invaluable resource that customers can count on for the long term.

An educational one-stop shop
Acknowledging that there is “a lot of misinformation out there,” Graves and the team at Sunshine Renewable Energy are educators as much as they are contractors. Everyone goes to great lengths to inform their customer base about the countless advantages and funding sources that are available while dispelling any misinformation that exists. Luckily, there is a great deal of evidence to support these ends.

According to research from Oxford University and The Regulatory Assistance Project, heat pumps outperformed heating systems powered by fossil fuels even at temperatures as low as -30°C, which is characteristic of Canadian winters. What’s more, the results showed that heat pumps operated more than twice as efficiently in these sub-zero conditions.

“Our motive is to be a very educational one-stop shop,” says Graves, and this is true both in terms of educating the public about the many advantages its services and solutions have to offer and in the training of its employees to be the best version of themselves.

Certainly, finding good people is a challenge in any industry, but knowing and acknowledging this, Sunshine has invested a great deal of effort and resources to develop talent internally, particularly when it’s the right person. Graves points out that at the company, “we have our own fair share of awesome people,” who are driven to continue to replicate that culture of quality because they are doing good work that is having positive results for both customers and the environment.

If you’re in the Halifax area and interested in finding out how Sunshine Renewable Energy can support your home or business energy needs, the team offers a risk-free, in-home consultation and assessment to get a sense of your current heating and electrical system, layout, and usage, and how the company can bring positive change through sustainable renewable solutions.

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