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Heat Pump FAQs

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What are the benefits of having a heat pump?  Due to our moderate climate, heat pumps are one of the best home heating options for Nova Scotians because they’re highly efficient to run. Most of the energy a heat pump uses comes from renewable energy, so they are an environmentally friendly way to heat and cool your home. They also help you save money on your home heating bills, clean the air in your home, and dehumidify your home in hot summer months.

How does a heat pump work? Heat pumps act much like a reverse refrigerator, transferring heat from one place to another. While a fridge transfers heat from inside the fridge to outside to cool the inside space, a heat pump will transfer heat from outside the home to inside. Heat pumps extract heat from cold outside air and move it inside. This is accomplished when refrigerant absorbs heat in one coil and then is transferred to another coil by a compressor where it releases the heat.

How much does a heat pump cost? The average cost of an installed ductless heat pump with one indoor heating/cooling zone is between $3,500 and $5,000. Additional heating zones and greater heating capacities will increase the cost of the system. Other factors that will affect the cost of an installed system include the brand, model, warranty and installation requirements.

What kind of warranty can I expect with a heat pump system? Warranties vary depending on the brand and model of heat pump you are considering. But here at Sea Coast HVAC, our warranties last for 12 years.

What incentives are available for heat pumps? There are many programs to aid you in your heat-pump installation. Visit our Efficiency Nova Scotia and Nova Scotia Power pages for more information.

Do I still need a backup heat source? A ducted heat pump system would be installed along with an integrated backup heat source – either electric, oil, or natural gas. A ductless system could rely on any previously existing heat source as the backup.

While heat pumps are the primary source heat, the backups would only supplement them in colder temperatures. Most do not require backup until -27 degrees Celcius. When the outside temperature dips below the balance point, your backup system kicks in.

How do you control a heat pump? A heat pump can be controlled by wall mounted controls, remote controls, or some models can be controlled through Wi-Fi enabled applications. You can set them on timers and adjust them manually.

Do I need to turn my heat pump off? The simple answer is no. Ductless heat pumps are designed to adjust to changing climates automatically and efficiently. Once you find a comfortable temperature on either “heat” or “cool” modes, avoid changing temperature or turning the unit on and off.

Which system is better for me – a ducted or ductless pump? This depends on a few factors, including house size and layout. Ductless systems tend to be a bit more efficient due to the integration of variable speed compressor technology, which is not commonly found in centrally ducted systems. Also, ductless heat pumps are not impacted by air leakage that can occur along the ducts.

Do heat pumps take up a lot of room? No, heat pumps are designed to be unobtrusive in their size and style, with low noise levels.

What kind of maintenance does a ductless heat pump require? Ductless heat pumps require some basic maintenance to ensure optimum performance. In most cases, keeping the filters and coils clean is all that’s needed, and can be performed easily by the homeowner. Keeping the outdoor unit clear of snow and ice is also important to ensure the heat pump is working as efficiently as possible. Show should be cleared from the front, sides and back of the outdoor unit. It is also very important to clear snow underneath the unit so it does not cause ice buildup when it goes through it’s normal defrost cycle.

Heat Pump FAQs
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