Heat pump is a heating and cooling device. It is not exactly the typical heating, ventilation and air conditioning unit used in commercial and residential properties. The traditional heating and cooling options have been boilers, air conditioners, gas furnaces and electric baseboard heaters. Heat pumps have been popular in many parts of the country where the temperatures do not dip to twenty degrees or below in the colder months of the year. Heat pumps are now becoming popular in colder regions because latest technology enables them to work efficiently and effectively in places where the mercury dips below the freezing point.
What is a Heat Pump?
Heat pump is an appliance that uses mechanical energy to extract and remove heat from the indoor or outdoor air. It has the ability to extract heat from the indoor air and circulates it outside. It can extract heat from the outdoor air and circulate it inside. In effect, a heat pump can act as a heater and it can be a cooler. Heat pumps do not produce hot or cold air. Hence, it does not consume energy needed for such transformation. Such devices are more eco friendly than the conventional HVAC systems.
Types of Heat Pumps
The ordinary or standard heat pumps use air as the source of heat. These are known as air source heat pumps. There are variants that use water and geothermal heat as the source. These are respectively known as water source heat pumps and geothermal heat pumps. Air source heat pumps can come in a split system, as a packaged rooftop unit, ducted or ductless units and with variable refrigerant flows.
Split system heat pump has indoor and outdoor units. It has evaporator coils and condenser coils in both the units. A packaged heat pump is a rooftop unit that has only one unit installed that has all coils and components. The cooled or warmed air is circulated through the ductwork in the building or a house. Ducted and ductless heat pumps are split systems. Ductless units cannot be packaged. Variable refrigerant flow heat pumps use a coolant and regulate its influence for better climate control. These can actually cool and heat two different places simultaneously depending on the setting.
Advantages of Heat Pumps
Heat pumps reduce energy consumption. It is possible to save up to a grand every year by switching from conventional heaters and coolers to heat pumps. Cost of repair or maintenance is much less. The appliance is more eco friendly with an exponentially reduced carbon footprint compared to with gas or oil burning furnace. There is a tax credit applicable on heat pumps wherein the entire cost of purchase and installation can be deducted from gross taxable income.
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