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Last updated: October 16, 2023

Heating and Cooling with Air Source Heat Pumps

Cost, Benefits, and Working of Air Source Heat Pumps

An air source heat pump is an effective heating and cooling solution that works through the consumption of electricity. It is a highly efficient system, which when installed correctly is known to heat your home up to three times more than the electrical energy it consumes.

Air source heat pumps are quite common among homes across the US. However, these heat pumps are less effective in areas that experience extended periods of freezing climate. However, advancement in technology has made it possible to use these heat pumps as an effective alternative in such regions.

Many HVAC installers provide air source heat pumps as a heating and cooling solution if you’re looking to replace your old system. You need to find an installer that can help you determine what type of air source heat pump you need to invest in. They can visit your home, assess the site of installation and your requirements, and aid you in making an informed decision.

Finding a reliable and trustworthy installer is, however, a difficult task. You will be required to spend hours of your time calling installers one by one, explaining your requirements, and requesting quotes. At GreenMatch, we can reduce this complex task to a simple click of the button below. Fill out the form and we will get you in touch with up to 3 installers along with their quotes to compare. Our service is free with no obligation.

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How do Air Source Heat Pumps Work?

An air source pump consists of a condenser, evaporator, indoor unit, compressor, and valves. All these components together ensure that the ASHP works optimally as both, a heater and cooler all year round. For a better understanding of how an air source heat pump works as both, a heater and a cooler, we have discussed the working of the heat pump below. The refrigerant in the heat pump circulates through a closed loop, absorbing and releasing heat efficiently.

Heating Mode

In heating mode, the refrigerant passes through the evaporator, or the outdoor coil and absorbs heat from the outdoor air. The absorbed heat is then compressed by the compressor, increasing its temperature and pressure. The hot refrigerant is then circulated through the condenser or the indoor coil. The heat is then released into the room through the indoor unit, heating the space. The refrigerant then expands and cools, returning to the evaporator and the entire process is repeated.

Cooling Mode

When in cooling mode, the process is reversed where the refrigerant passes through the evaporator, absorbing the heat from the inside and cooling your room. The refrigerant then passes through the compressor where the temperature and pressure of the refrigerant increases. The heat is then released into the outside air, expanding and cooling the refrigerant. This completes the cycle and the entire process is repeated, maintaining the indoor temperature.

To control and maintain the temperature, you can set the desired temperature on the thermostat, keeping the system on an on-off cycle as needed.

Benefits of Air Source Heat Pumps

ASHPs are quite common amongst homes across the US and they come with their fair share of benefits. The major benefit of an air source heat pump is that it is the least expensive of all the different types of heat pumps available in the market. Air source heat pumps have more advantages than disadvantages, making them a popular choice among homeowners. Below we have discussed some of the major benefits of air source heat pumps to give you a better understanding and help make an informed decision.

Energy Efficiency

Air source heat pumps are comparatively more energy efficient, mostly because they use electricity to heat or cool your home. Generally, heat pumps use fossil fuels or electricity generated by burning fossil fuels to heat or cool your home. In the long run, using air source heat pumps can also reduce your energy bills and help save money.

Healthy Environment

The ASHPs are less noisy compared to other types of heat pumps, greatly reducing the noise pollution inside your home. It gives you a quieter environment to live in.

The filter system in these heat pumps also promotes healthier, pollen and allergen free air inside your home. This allows you to breathe clean air, reducing the risks of developing respiratory diseases.

Heating and Cooling

One other major benefit of air source heat pumps is that they offer both heating and cooling solutions for your home.

You can use an ASHP all year round to meet your heating and cooling needs. They may, however, be used as a supplementary system in regions with extreme weather conditions and freezing temperatures.

Zone Based System

ASHP can be used separately for different zones or rooms in your home. You can heat or cool rooms or zones inside your home separately according to your desired temperatures for each.

On the downside, you may have to pay a higher upfront cost for installing an air source heat pump, whether you’re installing a new system or replacing an old one. Though, it may benefit you in the long run by saving on your energy bills.

However, you may end up paying higher energy bills since these heat pumps use electricity to operate. If the electricity rates in your region are higher, it may cost you more compared to other heat pumps that do not use electricity to operate.

One other minor disadvantage is that since ASHPs are dependent on electricity to operate, they are susceptible to power outages. Looking at these pros and cons, you may want to give your decision to install an air source heat pump a proper thought before actually buying it.

Consulting a certified installer can help you make the right decision, one that works in your favour. A certified installer can help you determine whether an air source heat pump would be the right choice for you or not.

GreenMatch can help you get in touch with 3 certified installers and get their quotes to compare. Click the button below and start comparing quotes in no time. Our service is free with no obligation.

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Types of Air Source Heat Pumps

There are two main types of air source heat pumps that you can install. In our guide, we have discussed the two types briefly to give you an idea of what they are. It will help you make an informed decision regarding which type of ASHP would be the most suitable for you.

Ducted Air Source Heat Pumps

Ducted ASHP is usually installed using an existing ductwork in your home, or a new ductwork is installed. These heat pumps distribute heat or cool air throughout your home through supply and return air vents. The heat pump has indoor units or vents and the heat pump unit, which includes a compressor, evaporator, condenser, and a blower. Ducted ASHPs are also referred to as packaged heat pump systems.

Ducted heat pumps provide centralized heating and cooling, allowing you to maintain a desired temperature throughout your home. This system is suitable if you have a large home with multiple rooms or zones. However, the installation of a ducted air source heat pump is complex, with a high upfront cost. Especially if you need to refurbish the existing ductwork or install new ductwork.

Ductless Air Source Heat Pumps (Mini-Split Heat Pumps)

A ductless or mini-split heat pump is typically split into two parts, as the name suggests. There is an outdoor unit, which houses the compressor and condenser, and an indoor unit/s, with the evaporator and a blower. The indoor

unit/s are usually wall, ceiling, or floor mounted and placed in the rooms or zones that need heating or cooling. The unit/s are connected to the outdoor unit via refrigerant lines.

One of the major advantages of a split system is that you have individual control over the units installed in different rooms or zones. This allows you to customize the temperature settings for different zones or rooms as needed or desired. Moreover, the absence of the complex ductwork makes a split system a comparatively flexible and cost-effective solution.

These systems are also easier to install without the need for complex ductwork. If you have a large home, you may need multiple units in order to heat or cool all the rooms or zones of your home. The very visible indoor units may affect the aesthetic appeal of your home, but can easily be dealt with.

Air Source Heat Pumps Cost

Air source heat pumps are usually the most preferred and sought after heat pumps owing to their lower cost. The average cost of an air source heat pump is between $3,800 and $10,500, including installation. Several factors influence the cost of installing an ASHP.

There are two types of air source heat pumps, ducted and ductless or mini-split systems. The cost of both types of

ASHPs are different. Ducted ASHP costs an average of $3,650 to $11,250 while a mini-split ASHP costs an average of $2,800 to $11,500. For a ducted heat pump, if ductwork needs to be installed then it may increase the overall cost of the heat pump.

The size and capacity of your heat pump, along with the efficiency rating of the heat pump are other factors that can bump up the cost of ASHP installation. The location and climate of your region are also factors that can influence the overall cost of an air source heat pump.

Hence, several factors can play a role in determining the actual cost of installing an air source heat pump. To get a better idea of what would the actual cost of installing an ASHP be, it would be advisable to contact and consult a certified installer. They will conduct a site visit, go through your requirements with you, and give you an estimate of how much you would be investing in your heat pump.

It would be, however, in your best interest to consult more than the first installer you find. There are many HVAC installers that you can contact in your area who can come by for a visit, inspect the site of installation and give you a quote for ASHP installation.

Another benefit of contacting more than one HVAC installer is that there might be different deals and guarantees or warranties that are offered by each installer. Going through several gives you more options and choices to make. You may find one that suits your needs best and fits your budget.

Finding a reliable, trustworthy installer is a different story. It would take up several hours or days of yours, trying to call one after the other, meeting and explaining your requirements, and requesting quotes. GreenMatch can help you make this task quite simple. Click on the button below and fill out the form with the details requested. We will match you with up to 3 certified and reliable HVAC installers and get their quotes to compare. Our service is free with no obligation.

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