Posted on: 13 October 2016Share
A heat pump is a handy HVAC unit that can replace your air conditioner, furnace, and even your water heater while reducing energy costs. The pump works by transferring heat from the air rather than creating heating or cooling. This type of setup has clear pros and cons that can help you determine if this is the type of HVAC unit that's best for you.
Pro: Higher Energy Efficiency
Energy efficiency is one of the main selling points of a heat pump. The efficiency comes from the fact that the pump moves rather than generates heat. What does that mean, exactly?
The pump has some similarities to a central air conditioner unit that also contains a furnace: there is one part of the unit outside the house, an air handler inside, and refrigerant travels through both via compressor. But instead of generating the temperatures needed, the heat pump is designed to absorb ambient heat from either the inside or outside of your home.
The pump absorbs ambient heat inside your home during the summer months to help cool things off then sends that air outside. During the cooler months, the heat pump absorbs the heat from the outside air and sends that inside to warm your home. Some electrical energy is still used in the transfer and circulation of the air, but not as much as a traditional HVAC unit.
Pro: Can Replace Your Water Heater, Too
A heat pump can be installed to also act as your water heater with the ambient temperatures applied to the water pipes as well as your vents. If you're in need of a water heater at the same time as your HVAC system, a heat pump can offer financial advantages and even better energy efficiency.
The heat pump water heater will apply the ambient air heat to the water pipes and your indoor temperatures. A heat pump system offers up to a 65 percent improvement on a traditional tank water heater. Add that to the approximately 5 percent of improvement over the most efficient traditional HVAC system, and you could end up with significant energy savings on your utility bills.
Con: Only Works in Areas with Temperate Weather
The main downside is that a heat pump only really works well in areas with temperate weather, which means the summers aren't overly hot and are relatively short and followed by a long, mild "winter" period. Ambient heat exists in air of any temperature, but the air within this temperate range can offer the best heating and cooling experience with a heat pump.
Discuss your options in further detail with an air conditioning repairs and installation company like Daniel's Heating Air & Plumbing Inc.