Major Benefits Offered By Air-Source Heat Pumps
Heat pumps are a great way to lower heating costs, saving hundreds of dollars per year over other fuel sources. We’ve put together a few of the benefits of air-source heat pumps below for anyone who might be considering having one installed.
At 10 degrees C, the air-source heat pump’s coefficient of performance (COP) is usually around 3.3. That means there is 3.3-kilowatt hours (kWh) worth of heat being transferred for each kWh of electricity that the heat pump receives. The COP is around 2.3 at -8.3 degrees C.
The COP lowers along with the temperature since extracting heating from the cooler air is more difficult.
Air-source heat pumps run with HSPFs (heating seasonal performance factors) that range from 6..7 up to 10, depending on their rated performance and where they are located in Canada. We have been able to identify three regions where using air-source heat pumps would be viable.
The West Coast is the first region. It is characterized as mild and having a high heat pump performance. Interior British Columbia, Nova Scotia, and southern Ontario is the second region. It is colder and a higher performance heat pump is required.
The colder areas of Labrador, Newfoundland, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Quebec, Ontario, Alberta, and British Columbia are the third region. It is not as economically beneficial to use an air-source heat pump outside of these three regions.
Your heating costs may be reduced by as much as 50 percent when you convert over to an air-source all-electric heat pump from an electric furnace. Your savings will vary, depending on such factors as the HSPF and size of the heat pump you install, the cost of electricity and fuel, how efficient your current heating system is, and the local climate.
More advanced air-source heat pump designs can offer domestic water heating. These systems are referred to as “integrated” units since heating domestic water is integrated with a home space-conditioning system. This method can provide high-efficiency water heating. You can reduce your water heating bills by as much as 25-50 percent.
It is critical to have proper maintenance to make sure that your heat pump has an extended service life and operates efficiently. Some of the basic maintenance you can yourself, but it is also a good idea to have an annual inspection done on your unit by a professional service contractor. When the cooling season is ending is the best time for your unit to be serviced, and before the next heating season starts.
Coil and filter maintenance have a significant impact on your system’s service life and performance. Dirty fans, coils, and filters reduce the airflow throughout your system. That reduces system performance, which can lead to the compressor getting damaged if that continues for an extended time period.
You should inspect your filters monthly and be replaced or cleaned according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Make sure to brush clean and vacuum the coils on a regular basis according to the manufacturer’s instructions. You can use a garden hose to clean the outdoor coil. While you are cleaning the coils and filters, look for any symptoms for other potential problems.
You should definitely clean the fan. However, the fan motor only should be lubricated only if it is specified in the manufacturer instructions. That should be done yearly to make sure the fan is providing the airflow needed for it to operate properly. At the very same time, you should check the fan speed.
Incorrect motor speeds, loose fan belts, or incorrect pulley settings in direct drive fans all can contribute to the unit performing poorly.
Ductwork should be cleaned and inspected as necessary to make sure the airflow has been restricted by abnormal dust buildup, loose insulation, or other obstacles that can make their way into the grilles.
Make sure that the registers and vents are not blocked by carpets, furniture or other items that may block airflow. When airflow is inadequate it can result in compressor damage, as we noted earlier.
A reputable service contractor will need to be hired in order to do the more advanced maintenance like making the mechanical and electrical adjustments or checking the level of refrigerant.
Service contracts are very much like those for gas and oil furnaces. However, heat pumps, compared to conventional equipment, are more sophisticated, and as a result, the average service costs are higher.
A heat pump’s energy costs can be less than other heating systems, especially oil or electric heating systems.
However, the savings you achieve will depend on if you are using natural gas, propane gas, oil, electricity, and on the costs of various energy sources within your local area. By operating a heat pump, you use more electricity but less oil or gas.
If electricity is expensive in your area, then your operating costs might be higher. So depending on those various factors, the investment’s payback period for an air-source heat pump instead of a central air conditioner can range from two up to seven years. We will be comparing heating energy costs between ground-source heat pumps and air-source pumps and oil and electric heating systems.
Warranties and Life Expectancy
The service life of an air-source heat pump is 15 to 20 years. Your system’s critical component is the compressor. The majority of heat pumps have a one-year warranty on labor and parts, and a 5 to 10-year warranty on a compressor (only parts), however different manufacturers offer different warranties, so you need to make sure you read the fine print.
If you would like more info or a quote on ultra high efficiency heating and cooling options, contact Furlong HVAC Services today.
We’d be happy to answer any questions and provide you with a system you will enjoy for many years.