Serving Southern Vancouver Island
Mon-Fri 7:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Serving Southern Vancouver Island
Mon-Fri 7:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Post Image
10 Aug, 2021
Posted by Shawn Dewolfe
0 comment

Minimize Energy Bills With A Heat Pump

Heating systems consume more energy and that impacts our monthly energy bills. You might not be aware that the heating systems contribute to sixty-six percent of your power bill. However, if you want to minimize energy expenses, you can think of using heat pump technology. You can consider installing environmentally friendly, energy-efficient heat pumps to find an effective solution for your energy bills. Heat pumps are the best alternatives to electric baseboards, oil heating, and natural gas systems. Also, you can use them both in summer and winter. 

Heat Pumps installed by Grifflyn Electric.

Are you a bit confused? Do you want to gather more information before going ahead with your decision? If yes, you can have a look at the following. It will help you to make an informed decision. We have covered all the possible aspects to enable you to make the right choice.

What Are Heat Pumps?

Heat pumps offer energy-efficient solutions to heat and cool your home. These systems are electrically operated and move heat to different places. However, you will notice a difference in the winter. Pump systems will pull outside air to make your indoor warm. In the summer, you can use them as an air conditioner. They will move the indoor warm air out and circulate cool air to maintain the indoor coolness. It is worth mentioning that these pumps are around 300% more efficient compared to your electric baseboards. Also, they are fifty percent more energy efficient than an AC unit.

Yes, you can use heat pumps in your Victoria BC home. This simple installation can minimize carbon footprint. Heat pumps will also reduce fossil fuel dependency.

What Are the Types?

ASHP or Air-Source Heat Pumps are designed to take outside heat air and circulate it indoors. Your pump can work efficiently, even at low temperatures. Some models can work in low temperatures down to  -25°C.

You will find different types of heat pumps. Each pump type comes with some specific features and benefits. Here are the details.

  • Ductless: It is a mini-split pump that has an outdoor compressor. It comes with one or even more heads that will be mounted near your ceiling. It will be connected to the outdoor compressor with a refrigerant line. Also, one compressor can serve more heads. However, the efficiency will be compromised with more heads. The installation will be easy and less time-consuming. Also, it will require minimal invasive work. However, you will need experienced electricians for the installation.
  • Mini-Ducted: This heat pump will use ductless technology. Also, it will have an outside compressor that will be connected to the indoor heads like the previous one. However, ducts will be installed and they will be connected to a concealed head in the mini-ducted systems. The ducts are mostly installed in the attic. They can maintain warmth and coolness in two or even more rooms.
  • Central: In the central system, there will be an outdoor compressor. It will be connected to the air handler or indoor furnace. Also, it will have ducts to make your indoor environment cool and hot. If you have a central furnace, you can replace it with a central heat pump. However, you will have to consider the size of your ductwork. Yes, a heat pump distributes air temperature in a greater volume compared to your gas or electric furnace. The reason is that heat pumps do not generate warm air. Instead, they transfer air. Therefore, you might need to adjust your existing ductwork before installing heat pumps.

It’s about the Heating Seasonal Performance Factor (HSPF): a heating efficiency rating for heat pumps. The higher the rating, the more efficient the heat pump. You can go with more efficient systems to minimize energy consumption. You can find a variable speed compressor to get a higher HSPF rating and better efficiency.

How to Select the Right Type

Your climate will decide the best type of heat system for you. The cold climate-rated pumps are effective and the most efficient for mild B.C. climate. These systems are designed to maintain your indoor air when the temperature is below -5°C. If you go with higher HSPF, you can expect adequate heating in extreme temperature conditions below -25°C.

While buying a heat pump system, you will have to check the SEER rating. With a higher rating, you can expect better efficiency. For efficient cooling, you can buy one with a SEER rating greater than 16.

What Makes Heat Pumps Worth Considering

From the above, you might have realized that heat pumps are the best solutions to maintain indoor air temperature. You can have one for optimal comfort. However, you will have to consider a few things before going ahead with your decision. 

 Heat Pumps for Cold Climates

  • When the temperature of your location is considerably and consistently low and below -5° celsius, you will need a cold climate-rated heat pump. It will offer adequate heating in low temperatures around -25°C. Once you have installed a cold-rated system, you do not need to invest in any backup heating.
  • A heat pump can help you with the required indoor temperature. However, the building design will have an impact on your indoor air. We can take the example of windows, insulations, and draft proofing. All these can minimize the heat requirement of your home. In that condition, you can consider installing a small heat pump in your home. If you choose a large pump, it will experience a short cycle. As a result, you will end up spending more on maintenance and utility.

Heat Pumps for Hot Climates

Many places in Victoria BC remain cool. However, there might be a few exceptions. You will have to consider your heating needs to find the best heat pump system. Otherwise, your system will meet the cooling needs instead of heating requirements. A heat pump can be an ideal choice for a Heat Dome.

If you consider a heat pump for coolness, it might make you spend more on your energy bill. Yes, if you do not have an air conditioner or central air unit, a heat pump can increase your energy bill significantly.

 Considerations to Switch to Heat Pumps

  • If you depend on a gas furnace for heating, a heat pump might decrease the gas bill. However, it will increase your electricity bill.
  • If your current heating system uses oil or gas, you might need some upgrades in your electrical system to take the electric load of this new installation. Yes, you will have to spend on upgrades.

Consider Your Current Heating System to find the Most Suitable One

When you use electric baseboards for heating:

  • A mini-split system can be an ideal choice for you.
  • The configuration and size of a home will decide how much heat is needed to create a comfortable indoor environment. You can choose a heat pump accordingly. If you go with a highly efficient unit, it can meet more than seventy percent heating needs of your home.
  • If you have a small home with an open design floor, you can get the maximum benefits.

When you use oil, electric furnace, or central gas for heating:

  • You can use central systems with ducts to have a better result. But you might need some adjustments in your current ductwork to ensure a proper installation. For smaller homes, ductless heat pumps will be the right choice. As these units are more efficient, you can expect energy-saving benefits.
  • If you want to switch from oil or gas heating systems, the energy bill will increase considerably. However, the oil and gas bill will be reduced. Gas is a bit cheaper compared to electricity per unit. But oil is expensive. If you want more energy benefits, you can consider installing more efficient pumps.

Your Unique Requirements Will Have the Deciding Role

 You will have to check different heat pumps to find the most suitable one based on your unique needs.

While replacing central heating systems:

  • Find central ducted systems.
  • A single central thermostat controls the temperature.
  • You can integrate them with an electric furnace or gas furnace to get backup heating whenever needed.
  • Calculate the heat loss to know the heat requirements of your home. It will help you to find the right size based on heat requirements.
  • Some duct adjustments might be required to ensure proper installation.

While replacing for reduced energy bills and more comfort

  • You can replace electric baseboards with ductless systems.
  • Even if you can control the temperature with remote controls, you can consider installing a traditional thermostat for some specific systems.
  • Ductless systems are the best for smaller homes that have open floors.
  • A ductless system might not meet your home’s heating needs. Your home’s configuration and size might impact the efficiency. In that condition, you can use baseboard heaters for backups.

While replacing for the cooler outdoor temperature and colder climates

  • For the colder climate in Victoria BC, you will have to go with cold-rated heat pumps. Some heat pumps are designed for cold climates. You will have to go with them to maximize the benefits.
  • The cold-rated heat pumps can work in extreme weather conditions between -5°C to -25°C. The efficiency will vary based on the manufacturer and model.

How Do You Get A Heat Pump?

A heat pump has these aspects: heating & air conditioning; the electrical installation; and the changes needed to accommodate adding a heat pump to your home or building. Often this starts with getting in touch with a reliable HVAC installer, but that heat pump needs to be wired into your electrical system. That’s where Grifflyn Electric comes in. We are experts. Talk with us and we can help you get going with deploying a heat pump. We’ll do our part to get the electrical element sorted out; and we can get you in touch with an HVAC installer.