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Heat Pumps 101

Written By 5 Star Charleston Heating & Air
December 22, 2022

If you are looking to install a new heating system or replace your old one, consider a heat pump! Heat pumps are an efficient heating and cooling device that can keep your home comfortable year round. The home comfort device is perfect for climates such as Charleston, because temperatures rarely drop below freezing. In this blog, we will discuss everything you need to know about heat pumps in Charleston and surrounding areas!

What Is A Heat Pump?

A heat pump is a two-in-one system and can both heat and cool your home. The misleading name refers to the process of relocating heat rather than producing it. In the winter, heat pumps draw heat energy from the outside air or ground and transfer it indoors. In the summer, the process is reversed. The cooling device collects heat inside your home and transfers it outdoors. Switching your heat pump from heating to cooling is a quick and easy process. Simply switch your thermostat from “Heat” to “Cool” and ensure it is operating on “Auto” mode.

As we mentioned, heat pumps are perfect for climates such as Charleston. While heat pumps can provide comfort in most climates, the device is most efficient in moderate climates. Heat pumps transfer heat rather than produce it, which means there needs to be heat to relocate.

Types Of Heat Pumps

The three main types of heat pumps include: air source, water source, and ground source (geothermal). This means heat pumps take advantage of the heat energy that can be found in the air, ground, and water sources surrounding your home. All types have similar operation processes, but draw heat from different sources.

Air Source

As the name suggests, air source heat pumps extract heat from the air. Air source heat pumps are the most common type, because they tend to be the easiest and cheapest to install. Most air source heat pumps are split systems, which means there is an indoor and outdoor unit. According to The U.S. Department Of Energy, air source heat pumps can save up to 50% compared to electric resistance heating such as furnaces.

Water Source

Water source heat pumps are a great option if a body of water is accessible near your home. The home comfort device extracts heat energy from the water and pumps it through its heating process. Due to the water source, this method can provide a constant source of heat when compared to air source heat pumps. Each water source heat pump is packaged individually and connected by a water loop.

Ground Source

Ground source heat pumps, also known as a geothermal heat pump, extracts heat from the ground surrounding your home. Due to soil holding heat better than air, ground heat pumps can be a reliable heat pump option when compared to air source heat pumps. Ground source heat pumps can be more costly upfront to install, but typically have low maintenance costs and can save money down the road. According to The U.S. Department Of Energy, ground source heat pumps can reduce energy use by 30%-60%, control humidity, and fit in a wide variety of homes.

Benefits Of A Heat Pump

While the different types of heat pumps have their operational differences, each one can provide similar benefits for your home. Below are five of the many advantages of heat pumps.

  • Energy Efficient
  • Increases Home Comfort
  • Two-In-One System
  • Improves Air Quality
  • Environmentally Friendly

Energy Efficient

So, what makes heat pumps so energy efficient anyway? Heat pumps do not generate heat on their own, they simply move it. This process uses substantially less energy than traditional heating systems such as furnaces. According to The U.S. Department Of Energy, heat pumps easily cut electricity use by 50% when compared to other systems. Heat pumps avoid energy loss and can save you money on energy bills for years to come.

Increases Home Comfort

Heat pumps can be easily controlled by your thermostat and can keep you comfortable throughout each season and weather fluctuations. As most locals know, Charleston can experience warm days in the winter and cold days in the summer. Heat pumps can heat and cool your home with just the push of a button. Additionally, heat pumps can dehumidify the air making a comfortable environment.

Two-In-One System

Heat pumps can both heat and cool your home contrary to the misleading name. This is one of the many conveniences to the system, because this means there is only one system to maintain. Other heating and cooling devices are typically two systems and require more attention. Heat pumps need to be serviced once a year and can cut down on operational costs.

Improves Air Quality

Heat pumps filter air before it is released into your home, which removes pollutants, dust, and other particles. Unlike many heating options, heat pumps do not release combustion fuels into the air. This benefit can protect the health and safety of all residents in your home. As mentioned earlier, heat pumps work to remove humidity and decrease mold and mildew growth.

Environmentally Friendly

Utilizing heat pumps can reduce your carbon footprint and benefit the environment due to transferring heat rather than creating it. Many heating units burn fossil fuels and release harmful greenhouse gasses into the environment. Without relying on fossil fuels to heat your home, you are helping fight climate change!

Heat pumps can be an effective and reliable heating and cooling solution for your home. We are here to suggest the best home comfort device to keep you comfortable and money in your piggy bank. Give us a call for heat pump repair or installation in Mount Pleasant, James Island, and surrounding areas!