A heat pump is an incredibly powerful alternative to conventional air conditioning and central heating systems, that work to keep your home at a comfortable temperature no matter what season you use it in. A heat pump is powered by electricity, and it uses heat exchange to circulate air to keep a home at a set comfort temperature.
Are you having renovation work done by a builder? Ask if they know about heat pump technology and if they can accommodate the works for installation.
How Does it Work?
Interestingly, a heat pump does not generate heat. Instead, it mixes air of different temperatures and then circulates this around your home. This will, however, depend on the type of heat pump that you have. The heat or energy used to power this pump might be sourced from the outside air, or in some cases the heat pump will use air cooled from underground, which is known as a geothermal loop. Read more about this by reading our blog titled ‘super-energy-efficient-houses-use-up-to-90-less-energy-passive-house-explained’
In more temperate climates, it is possible that a heat pump can eliminate the need for traditional heating systems and/or air-conditioners all together because it is designed to maintain a constant temperature throughout the year. It is also a much healthier option versus air conditioning as it uses fresh air rather than circulating old, stale air. Plus, it is energy-saving too!
Heat pump systems come with additional extra’s too, like additional zonal heating, providing heating and cooling, at the same time, exactly where you need it. This type of zonal heating is only possible through the likes of the HPV series by Total Home Environment.
Forced Air versus Heat Pump
A heat pump will typically harness heat energy from the ground and from the air outdoors. When it comes to cooling your home, it is designed to exchange heat from inside your home, by pumping it outside whilst utilizing cooler air from pipes underground. When it comes to heating your home, a heat pump pulls warmer air from outside or from the ground where the temperature remains at a constant 12 degrees Celsius all year round. A heat pump uses less energy to operate than traditional forced-air systems and some heat pump systems have heating elements built-in for when an increase in the outside/underground air temperature is needed for use indoors.
How to Use a Heat Pump Efficiently
A heat pump works differently than many other home heating and cooling systems and should be operated differently too. Here are a couple of general guidelines when operating a heat pump:
- Set your heat pump to medium or medium-high fan speed.
- If your home happens to be equipped with an auxiliary heating or cooling system, turn them off until you have established a baseline temperature within your home. You might be surprised to know that you do not need to use these other systems when you have a heat pump installed.
- Ensure that you change your heat pump filter regularly. This should be based on the manufacturer’s recommended schedule and should be done by a professional.
- Ensure that you have scheduled regular maintenance for your heat pump and all your other HVAC systems.
Operating your home heat pump will depend on the make and model of the heat pump ventilation system that you have. You should be able to consult your heat pump manual or the company that installed your heat pump ventilation system.
Generally, heat pumps are cost-effective in terms of purchased energy and very efficient in terms of heating and cooling your home. They can save you money, are much better for the environment, and will maintain fresher air levels indoors for you and your family to enjoy.