5 Awesome Advantages of an Air Source Heat PumpMay 7, 2021
Air Source Heat Pumps are undeniably one of the cleverest pieces of kit to come out of the 21st century, not least of all because they offer a clean alternative to fossil fuels for your home heating.
In this easy guide to the Air Source Heat Pump, we look at the key advantages and why so many home owners are making the switch when upgrading their heating systems. But let’s take it back to basics.
What is an Air Source Heat Pump?
Air source heat pumps (ASHPs) essentially transform cold air from outside into warm air, which is then pumped into radiators and underfloor heating within the home. They are roughly the size of a large air conditioning unit and they sit on the outside of your property.
There are two types of air source heat pump. A water heat pump which creates heat for water and an air to air system which turns cold air into warm air.
How Does an Air Source Heat Pump Work?
Air from the outside is sucked inside of the air source heat pump and then fanned over a copper coil, which is fill with a fluid called refrigerant. This fluid absorbs heat and is also able to convert to a gas.
The refrigerant fluid begins to ‘boil’ at -10 degrees, turning it into a gas.
The gas is then carried to a compressor, which compresses it down so much that it increases its temperature.
The now hot gas is pumped throughout the homes central heating system. During this time, the cold water within the heating system turns the refrigerant back to a fluid again, but not before the gas heat is pushed through the heat exchanger, creating hot water in the cylinder.
What are the Advantages of an Air Source Heat Pump?
Although installation costs are higher than traditional heating systems, the long term savings are undeniable. Energy bills dramatically reduce, in some cases as much as 68%, beginning immediately after installation. The maintenance costs are almost non-existent too. As renewable energy takes over, we expect the cost of air source heat pumps to come right down.
Consistent, sustainable heat all year round
Unlike the traditional gas boiler, an air source heat pump is able to regulate consistent heat, regardless of the weather outside. In fact, an air source heat pump is able to convert air temperatures from as low as -20 degrees Celsius! On the flip side, it’s also possible to use your air source heat pump as an air-conditioning unit.
Lower carbon footprint
Growing concerns for the environment and tighter restrictions on fossil fuels, means that traditional methods of home heating will fade out. Adapting to clean energy now means you are reducing one of the biggest contributions to carbon emissions that you can individually make.
Quick and easy to install
An average sized air source heat pump can fit in with existing heating systems and can take just 2 or 3 days to install. Again, as renewable energy becomes the norm, installation will become quicker and even easier.
Not only that, air source heat pumps last up to 20 years with little or no maintenance. This longevity means less hassle and less overall spend!
So are there any Disadvantages of an Air Source Heat Pump?
Of course, nothing is perfect and it’s always worth doing your research thoroughly before committing to any major changes to your heating system. There’s no doubt that the pros of this impressive technology far outweigh any cons of air source heat pumps and we can expect to see more and more of these in urban areas as we move through the 2020s and beyond.
With the UK Government extending the deadline for the Renewable Heat Incentive and announcing the phasing out of gas and oil boilers in the coming years, heat pumps will undoubtedly grow in popularity here in my home country.
I am glad you pointed out the fact that heat pumps are effective in temperatures as low as -20°C. Many people here in Scotland are nervous about installing heat pumps due to the low (yet still temperate) temperatures experienced during most winters. We need to get the message out there that heat pumps are a viable alternative if we are going to meet the ambitious UK carbon reduction targets. Heat pumps are the future and fossil fuels must be consigned to the dustbin of history.