You’ve probably heard the term “heat pump” before, but do they work and what makes them different from a typical air conditioner or furnace? In this blog, we’ll dive into how heat pumps work and explore some of their benefits—and why they’re a great fit for homes here in the Lake Charles area.
At Ace Air, we offer free in-home estimates on new furnaces and heat pumps. If you’re in the market for a new system, our free, no-obligation estimate is a great place to start. Contact our team today!
How heat pumps work
There are two types of heat pumps: air source heat pumps and ground-source systems. We primarily install the air source type here in the Lake Charles area, but let’s break it down and explain the differences between each.
Air Source Heat Pumps
Air source heat pumps generate both hot and cool air. Generally, air source heat pumps consist of two units: an inside unit called the air handler and the outside unit called the heat pump.
Unlike furnaces that create heat, heat pumps work by moving hot air from one area to another. In the summer, this means removing heat energy from your living space to the outside, cooling the temperature inside of your home.
In the winter, this process is reversed: heat energy (and it’s there!) is extracted from cold outside air and pumped into your home.
You actually have something like a heat pump in your home already. Your refrigerator uses the same technology to keep your food cool.
As the name implies, air source heat pumps are extracting heat energy from the outside / inside air. This process is energy-efficient compared to traditional furnaces and air conditioners, but not quite as efficient as ground-source systems. Let’s explain why.
Ground Source Heat Pumps
Ground source heat pumps are another type of heat pump. They work as both a central heating and cooling system transferring heat to and from the ground. The system uses the ground as a heat sink during the summer and heat source during the winter.
Generally, the pipe that carries the air is laid horizontally in the ground about two meters deep. However, it can also be installed vertically at a depth of up to 100 meters in case there is not enough space outside.
While the installation costs of ground source heat pumps are high, you can be able to recover the costs within a few years due to lower energy bills. They’re more efficient than air source heat pumps.
Benefits of heat pumps
Heat pumps are a alternative to traditional HVAC systems. Here are just some of the benefits of this type of system:
- Heat pumps are capable of both cooling and heating your home, which means you only need one system, instead of two.
- They’re energy-efficient, and because they handle both cooling and heating, they can save you money all year.
- While they can’t keep up with sub-freezing temperatures, heat pumps are perfect for mild winter climates, much like the ones here in the Lake Charles area.
Call Ace Air to learn more about heat pumps—and to get a free quote!
At Ace Air, we have a team of highly qualified and experienced technicians who can give you expert advice relating to all heating and cooling systems—including heat pumps.
Whether you need to know more about how heat pumps work or you’re ready to buy, start by giving us a call for a free in-home estimate.