Heat pumps have come a long way in energy efficiency and cost to operate. If you home does not use a heat pump currently, now's the time to consider if it's good choice for your home.
Heating and cooling costs are a significant portion of a household’s spending, which leads most homeowners to look for the most cost-effective options possible when upgrading their HVAC systems. Today’s heat pumps are energy efficient and relatively inexpensive to operate, making them a great choice for budget-conscious buyers. Here, we’ll discuss these systems and the benefits that make them such a great investment.
How a Heat Pump Works
Heat pumps offer numerous advantages, with their basic function being one of the most notable. They work by catching hot air and moving it from one place to another, thereby warming cold areas and cooling hot ones. As the heat moves, the pump increases indoor comfort without sacrificing efficiency. Air-source pumps are the most prevalent option, and they use the air surrounding outdoor and indoor units to capture and disperse heat.
The cooling process begins with liquified refrigerant in the inside unit; that refrigerant is converted to gas by the evaporator. As this happens, the refrigerant absorbs heat from the surrounding air, creating cooled air that’s moved through your home’s ductwork and into its interior by fans. The compressor routes the heated refrigerant to the outdoor unit, changing it back to its liquid form and starting the process again.
The above process happens in reverse when a heat pump warms a home. The liquid refrigerant still changes to gas and absorbs heat, but now, the heat is released indoors via a heat exchanger. A heat pump can work to warm a home even when it’s slightly above freezing, but it’s not as effective at lower temperatures.
Now that we’ve discussed the basics of heat pumps let’s get into their benefits.
Heat pumps have earned a reputation for extreme energy efficiency. For instance, as a home is being heated, a pump may be able to move four or more units of heat for every unit of power it consumes, resulting in an efficiency level approaching 400%. These achievements are possible because a heat pump simply moves existing heat instead of using electricity or fuel to generate it. Although cooling isn’t as efficient as heating, it is still much more efficient than an air conditioner’s comparable function.
A Low Cost of Operation
One of the biggest efficiency-related advantages is the reduction in operating costs. A heat pump may help a homeowner save up to 40% on their monthly cooling and heating costs. In some cases, the savings are so significant that it’s possible to recoup the cost of the heat pump within just a few years. When HVAC equipment pays for itself with time, it’s a major benefit—and heat pumps provide it.
Heat pumps don’t consume electricity or fuel to create heated or cooled air, so they lessen the burden on local utility companies. These units don’t generate carbon monoxide, greenhouse gases, and other harmful by-products. When more of an area’s homeowners upgrade to heat pumps, local utilities may cause less pollution. It’s a win for you and the environment!
Peace and Quiet
Today’s heat pumps work quietly, making much less noise than comparable cooling and heating systems. That makes them a great choice for those who are sensitive to certain sounds, such as those that may come from a piece of HVAC equipment.
With Heat Pumps, Size Matters
When choosing a heat pump, it’s important to ensure that it’s properly sized for your family’s heating and cooling needs. Sizing is a measure of the functional capacity of a piece of equipment, as well as its ability to keep a home at the desired temperature. If the system is too small, it won’t be able to keep up with demand; if it is too big, it’ll simply waste energy.
Before installing a heat pump, your HVAC expert will do a load calculation to determine just how much cooling and heating your home requires. This complex assessment considers the structure’s thermal and physical properties as well as your preferences, and its results will tell the contractor which type of heat pump will meet your needs. Contact an HVAC technician to discuss heat pump selection or to schedule a load calculation.
Consider Efficiency Ratings When Selecting a Heat Pump
All heat pumps receive numerical ratings as an indication of their efficiency. In most instances, homeowners should strive for systems with the highest possible rating. Heating functions are rated by HSPF or heating seasonal performance factor while cooling functions are rated by SEER or seasonal energy efficiency ratio.
Efficient systems typically have HSPFs ranging from 8 to 10 and SEERs from 14 to 18. Heat pumps, as well as other kinds of heating and cooling equipment, have their ratings and other information prominently displayed on their labeling. The EnergyGuide label is often found on the outside of a piece of equipment, and with it, homeowners get the efficiency information they need to make financially sensible purchase decisions.
A Well-Maintained Heat Pump is an Efficient One
Once you’ve learned about heat pumps and their benefits, you’ll naturally want to do everything you can to enjoy those advantages for as long as possible. With regular maintenance, homeowners can sustain the efficiency and performance of their heat pump systems. Get in touch with our HVAC experts to schedule your maintenance appointment before winter arrives.
Like other heating and cooling equipment, heat pumps should receive preventive maintenance at least two times a year; most of our customers schedule it in the fall and spring. Seasonal maintenance keeps heat pumps working at peak efficiency and extends their lifespan while preventing problems that may lead to costly and time-consuming repairs.
Count On Our Team for Efficient, Reliable Heat Pump Installation, Repairs, and Maintenance
Modern heat pumps offer efficiency, environmental, and comfort benefits that conventional heating and cooling systems just cannot match. They help homeowners save money every month, they work quietly, and they use less energy. For additional information on the advantages of heat pumps, or to schedule an installation appointment, contact us online or call us today.