There are many things to know about choosing the right heat pump for your home, and getting it installed correctly. Below are some of our most frequently asked Heat Pump questions. Please feel free to contact us if your question isn’t listed below.
Q. What is a Heat Pump?
A. A heat pump – also known as a reverse cycle air conditioner, is a clever device that extracts heat energy from one volume of air and transfers it to another. So one body of air gets warmer, whilst the other gets cooler.
They can be used to:
- heat in the winter
- cool in the summer
- dehumidify the air
- circulate and filter the air
Q. How do Heat Pumps work?
A. Heat pumps do not generate heat but extract it from one body of air and transfer it to another. They use the same principle as your fridge/freezer at home, compressing gas and then allowing it to expand, extracting heat as it does so.
Even if the air outside is freezing heat pumps can extract heat energy and transfer it inside to keep you warm. In summer the system works in reverse, extracting heat from indoors and transferring it outside leaving you comfortable and cool.
Q. Why are Heat Pumps better than other forms of heating?
A. Heat pumps offer many benefits over other forms of heating. Firstly they are much cheaper to run giving up to 4 times more heat than you pay for, they can be used all year round for cooling and air filtering and dehumidification. They are safe and easy to use.
Heat pumps produce low density heat which is safe for children and the elderly, unlike fires or electric heaters. They are unmatched for convenience and ease of use (Remote Controlled). They don’t pollute our atmosphere with the products for combustion and they use ozone friendly refrigerants.
Q. What is an inverter Heat Pump?
A. Inverter systems save energy by using a variable controlled (speed) Compressor. The output is controlled to only provide the energy required to keep the room to the set temperature. By reducing the output required less power is used and this substantially reduces power consumption. Inverter control not only saves you money but also keeps you more comfortable with more even temperatures.
Q. What size Heat Pump will I need for my home?
A. Every home is as different. The key to selecting the right heat pump for your home is accurate estimation of the heat that will need to be transferred into your home in winter for heating, and out of your home in summer for cooling.
This needs to be carried out by an experienced and qualified technician. Contact us so we can arrange a time for an in home consultation.
Q. What will affect the size of Heat Pump I need?
A. The amount of heating needed will depend on the potential for heat loss through walls, windows and roofs. To minimise this loss, good insulation is recommended. By insulating first, the size of heat pump selected will be generally smaller and therefore cheaper to run. The aspect of the home is also an important factor as north facing rooms are generally warmer and require less heating.
Q. Do Heat Pumps take up a lot of room?
A. No, heat pumps are designed to be unobtrusive in their size and style, with low noise levels. There are various types of heat pumps. Some can be fitted into existing fireplaces or be recessed into walls. Others can be mounted on walls close to the ceiling. Ducted split systems can be hidden in the ceiling.
Q. What types of Heat Pump Systems are there?
A. There are various heat pump systems available ranging from:
- Single Split system suitable for an individual room - one indoor unit and one outdoor unit.
- Multi split system suitable for multiple room situations – multiple indoor units and one outdoor unit.
- Ducted systems. One outdoor unit connected to one or more concealed indoor unit with the heat distributed through ducting to each individual room via grills in the ceiling or floor. Suitable for a whole home heating or cooling solution.
Q. How much does it cost to run a Heat Pump?
A. This depends on the amount of heating required. Heat pumps transfer heat from outside air and in this way produce three to four times more heat. Its efficiency is 300% to 400%. This means for 5kW of heating you pay for around 1.5kW of electric energy. Heat pump heating is roughly one quarter the cost of electric heating and about one third the cost of gas heating
Q. How quiet are Heat Pumps?
A. Modern inverter heat pumps from the top manufacturers are very quiet. The source of noise in a typical Heat Pump is the air impinging on the grille as it is forced out of the unit. Air noise is marginally higher than ambient background noise and is usually not distracting.
Q. Are Heat Pumps reliable?
A. Yes. Heat pumps are extremely reliable. All top brands come with minimum 5 Year manufacturer’s warranty.
Q. What is a Heat Pump Energy Star Rating?
A. All Heat Pumps that are sold in New Zealand are required to have a star rating and must meet a Minimum Energy Performance Standard (MEPS).
The MEPS (Minimum Energy Performance Standard) for New Zealand is a COP (Coefficient of Performance) (Heating) and EER (Energy Efficiency Rating) (Cooling) of 2.3. All appliances that reach this level are awarded 2 stars. For every .3 increase in either the COP or EER the appliance receives another star.
All Heat Pumps have two star ratings, one for heating and one for cooling. The more stars the more energy efficient.
Q. How much will it cost to buy and install a Heat Pump?
A. Because every home is unique, the installed cost of a heat pump is different for each home and will depend on the size and type of heat pump and the position of the indoor unit and outdoor compressor unit.
Q. Do Heat Pumps cause stuffiness?
A. No. Unlike fires and glowing electrical elements, Heat Pumps don’t burn oxygen and so eliminates stuffiness.
Q. Are Heat Pumps any good for allergy & asthma sufferers?
A. Yes. Heat pumps have a range of filters that clean and purify the air:
- Catechin Filter: Dust, mold spores and microorganisms are absorbed onto the filter by static electricity and growth is inhibited and deactivated by the polyphenol ingredient extracted from apples.
- Ion Deodorizing Filter: The filter deodorizes by powerfully decomposing absorbed odours using the oxidizing and reducing effects of ions generated by the ultrafine particle ceramic.
- Plasma Filter: High performance electronic air cleaner removes dust and odour, improving indoor air quality.
Q. How long will the Heat Pump in home consultation take?
A.In most cases it shouldn’t take longer than 30 minutes. We will be able to discuss possible system and installation options with you. Unlike most Heat Pump companies, we do not employ salesmen. A technician will visit and give you unbiased knowledge. We wont tell you what you need to hear in order to make the sale.