Heat Pumps: How They Work

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Did you know that in addition to heating and cooling your home, heat pumps can also be used to heat water? In fact, you can choose to install a system that is specifically meant to heat water, or install a system that is meant to both heat your home and water.

How Do They Work?

This system works by using electricity to move the heat from one place to another instead of having to generate the heat from scratch. For this reason alone, it makes this type of water heating system more efficient that traditional electric heating systems. Heat pumps work just like a refrigerator, only in reverse. It works by pulling heat from the air, and places it into a tank to heat the water. You do have the choice to install a heating pump plus the storage tank, or you can alter the heating pump you use to heat the air and add a water tank for storage.

In order for a heat pump to work properly, it would need to be installed in an area that has between 40 to 90 degrees F. It should also be in area that will provide at least 29 cubic meters of air space. You will not be able to fully reap the benefits of a heat pump water system in an area that is very cold. This is because they will cool the air instead of heating it.

You also have the alternative of using a geothermal heat pump which works by drawing heat from the air during summer, and heat from the ground during the colder months. They do cost more than a normal heat pump, but they are up to 60% more efficient. Other advantages of this type of pump include their durability, humidity control and ability to fit into most homes. If you are considering installing a geothermal heat pump you will need to consider factors such as size of your land, landscape type and subsoil.

You have the option of adding a desuperheater which is a small heat exchanger which works by using highly heated gases from the compressor to heat the water. This water is then transported to the storage tank. Desuperheaters can be used during the summer by making use of heat that would have otherwise been wasted into the ground. During the other seasons when your desuperheater cannot produce a lot of heat, you will need to rely on the heated water in your storage tank.

Choosing A Heat Pump Water Heater

When it comes to choosing which heat pump water heater to choose from, you will need to have several factors in mind. One of them is the type of fuel it uses and its availability. You do not want to choose one that uses some exotic fuel that you will need to ship from halfway across the world. Other factors are its energy efficiency and its overall costs. You want to buy heat pumps that do not cost and arm and a leg to run, and that are still efficient in meeting your needs.