Heat pumps are standalone, dual-component devices that use electricity and refrigeration technology to provide cooling and heating for houses, offices, and other residential and commercial properties.
Because they are so efficient, heat pumps have been rising in popularity during the recent years. They're especially popular among homeowners who are looking for a sturdy, eco-friendly, and cost-effective HVAC system that doesn't require frequent heating repair in Chesterfield, VA.
In previous articles, we examined the energy efficiency levels of different HVAC systems and gave you some pointers on how to heat your home when your furnace breaks down. Now we'll take a closer look at heat pumps to help you determine whether they're the right heating option for you. Keep reading to learn more.
What is a heat pump and how does it work?
The term "heat pump" is used to describe systems that use a compressor and a circulating structure of gas or liquid refrigerant to move (or pump) heat from one location to another. This technology has been around for decades, and is typically used in appliances such as refrigerators and air conditioners.
Heat pumps come in different types:
- Air source heat pumps transfer heat between your house and the outside air, either by absorbing the heat inside the room and taking it outside (cooling) or by extracting the heat out of the outside air and bringing it inside (heating).
- Geothermal heat pumps use underground heat pipes to harness the solar energy stored in the water or ground. Also known as ground source heat pumps, these pumps boast higher efficiencies than their air sourced counterparts.
- Absorption heat pumps don't use electricity. Rather, they use geothermal heated water, solar-heated water, natural gas, or some other heat source.
- Ductless mini-split heat pumps are wall-mounted units that are used to heat a single room. As their name implies, they don't need any ducts and can be easily retrofitted. These systems are basically smaller-scale air source heat pumps.
- Hybrid heat pumps are essentially heat pumps that have "teamed up" with a secondary energy source (eg., a gas or oil furnace ).
Can a heat pump heat a whole house?
Absolutely. The times when heat pumps favored homes with more "open" floor plans are long past. These days, multi-zone capable units come equipped with a number of modern features such as greater operating efficiencies, improved room temperature controls, reduced overall project costs, and more.
What's more, high-efficiency heat pumps also can provide better dehumidification than standard central ACs, which results in reduced energy usage and greater cooling comfort during the summer months.
Modern features to look for in a heat pump include:
- Desuperheater, which uses waste heat from the pump's cooling mode to heat water.
- Scroll compressor has a longer life and provides warmer air when in heating mode than a typical piston compressor.
- Variable or dual-speed fan motors reduce cool drafts and maximize savings.
Who should I call when I need expert heating repair in Chesterfield, VA?
Are you looking to install at a cutting-edge heat pump at your Beach Station property? Or perhaps you're planning to replace your old gas furnace with a new one and you'd like to consult with experienced HVAC technicians before you make any final decisions?
Whatever your HVAC-related needs may be, don't hesitate to give Howell's Heating & Air a call. We're a longstanding HVAC contractor in Chesterfield that boasts extensive satisfaction guarantees, unparalleled expertise and integrity, and a long list of returning customers. Contact us today.