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December 2, 0001
Heat pumps are growing in popularity with homeowners who are looking for a more energy efficient alternative to a traditional central HVAC system. If you're planning to replace your older heating and cooling equipment, it's worth learning more about how a heat pump operates and the benefits of owning one.
Heat Pumps 101
An air source heat pump that runs on electricity is the type most American homeowners choose. The set up is the same as a split-system air conditioner with an outdoor condenser and indoor coil that use a refrigerant loop to extract heat and expel it outside, and an air handler to distribute cooled air.
You won't even notice the difference between a heat pump and an A/C until summer is over and heating season arrives. Then, you can hit a switch to reserve the equipment's operation so it draws warmth from the outdoor air and transfers it inside to heat your home. Most heat pumps are equipped with a backup heat source, like a gas furnace, for those times when it's too cold outside to efficiently extract heat from the air.
Unique Benefits of Heat Pumps
Heat pumps can offer several advantages over other heating and cooling options, especially in our moderate climate.
Greater heating efficiency. Heat pumps can typically deliver up to three times the heat energy for every unit of electricity they use. This extreme efficiency is possible because they're simply moving heat instead of creating it by burning fuel.
Low operating costs. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, your heating-related electricity consumption can drop by up to 50 percent with a heat pump.
Greater safety. Heat pumps run on electricity rather than burning fossil fuel, so they can't emit combustion fumes that contain deadly carbon monoxide gas.
Ease of installation. Air source heat pumps are easy to install if you have an existing forced-air system, and you can even use the same ductwork to distribute heated and cooled air.
For expert advice about whether a heat pump is the right choice for your Hampton Roads-area home, contact us today at Russell's Heating & Cooling.