Air Source Heat Pump – Eco-friendly & Money Saving
An air source heat pump (ASHP) is a system which transfers heat from outside to inside a building, or vice versa. Under the principles of vapor compression refrigeration, an ASHP uses a refrigerant system involving a compressor and a condenser to absorb heat at one place and release it at another place. They can be used as a space heater or cooler, and are sometimes called “reverse-cycle air conditioners”.
In domestic heating use, an ASHP absorbs heat from outside air and releases it inside the building, as
- hot air,
- hot water-filled radiators,
- underfloor heating and/or
- domestic hot water supply.
The same system can often do the reverse in summer, cooling the inside of the house.
When correctly specified, an ASHP can offer a full central heating solution and domestic hot water up to 80 °C.
Advantages and Disadvantages of an Air Source Heat Pump
Air source heat pumps are a renewable alternative with which to heat your home in the UK. With an air source heat pump, you can save money on your energy bills as well as reduce your carbon footprint (when compared to a gas or electric heating system).
One of the primary advantages of an air source heat pump is their versatility and affordability.
An air source heat pump can work for either heating or cooling purposes, and can be used for space heating or water heating.
What’s more, is that the UK government grants make this renewable energy source even cheaper to run. Read more about what we can do for you as an approved installer for the government’s Green Homes Grant.
Advantages of Air Source Heat Pumps
- Low carbon footprint
- Save money on your energy bills
- Eligible for Green Homes Grant
- Can be used for both heating and cooling
- Can be used for space heating and domestic hot water
- Works even in lower temperatures
- Easy installation process
- Low maintenance
- Long lifespan (15 – 25 years)
- No fuel storage needed
- Can be powered by wind or solar energy
Disadvantages of Air Source Heat Pumps
- Lower heat supply than boilers
- Extra spending is required to install underfloor heating
- Your home must be well insulated already
- Lower efficiency below 0°C
- Lower savings hen compared to low price mains gas
- Some Electricity is needed to run an air source heat pump
- Some air source heat pumps can be noisy
Save Money with Air Source Heat Pumps (ASHP)
By switching to air source heat pumps, you can reduce your energy bills as you’ll be using the outside air for your heating and cooling needs. Your savings will be more significant if you are going from an electric or coal-based system.
ASHP Can be Used for Heating and Cooling
Air source heat pumps can be used for both heating and cooling purposes. Depending on the model, they can provide cooling in the summer and heating in the winter.
In addition, air source heat pumps work very well with underfloor heating — so if you want to get the most out of your system, you should strongly consider installing underfloor heating.
Can be Used for Space Heating & Domestic Hot Water
Depending on the air source heat pump, you can also use it to heat your water. This depends on the temperature of the water in the heating system (also known as ‘flow temperature’). To be able to heat water, the flow temperature needs to be approximately 55°C. If your system is only designed for space heating, the flow temperature will be 35°.
If you are looking for both space heating and water heating, then opting for an ASHP that has a flow temperature of 55°C is needed.
Effective in Low Temperatures
An air source heat pump can extract heat from the ambient air even at a lower temperature, down to -20°C. What is more, heat pumps are known to work efficiently in severely cold countries such as Canada. Success stories reveal an air-to-air heat pump can generate 40°C heat when outside temperatures are as low as -30°C.
Air source heat pumps have a long lifespan, and with proper maintenance, they can be operational for up to 20 years. What’s more, is that most air source heat pumps have 5-year warranties.
No Fuel Storage Needed
No fuel storage is needed with air source heat pumps, because the fuel used is the outside air. With oil-fired boilers, for example, you need to store the oil somewhere, which would take up extra space on your property. Not relying on fuel, such as oil or wood pellets, also means you won’t have to pay additional fees for fuel deliveries.
Air at any temperature above absolute zero contains some energy. An air source heat pump transfers some of this energy as heat from one place to another, for example between the outside and inside of a building. This can provide space heating and hot water. A single system can be designed to transfer heat in either direction, to heat or cool the interior of the building in winter and summer respectively. For simplicity, the description below focuses on use for interior heating.
The technology is similar to a refrigerator or freezer or air conditioning unit: the different effect is due to the physical location of the different system components. Just as the pipes on the back of a refrigerator become warm as the interior cools, so an ASHP warms the inside of a building whilst cooling the outside air.
The main components of an air source heat pump are:
- An outdoor heat exchanger coil, which extracts heat from ambient air
- An indoor heat exchanger coil, which transfers the heat into hot air ducts, an indoor heating system such as water-filled radiators or underfloor circuits and a domestic hot water tank.
A “standard” domestic air source heat pump can extract useful heat down to about −15 °C (5 °F). At colder outdoor temperatures the heat pump is less efficient; it could be switched off and the premises heated using only supplemental heat (or emergency heat) if the supplemental heating system is large enough. There are specially designed heat pumps that, while giving up some performance in cooling mode, will provide useful heat extraction to even lower outdoor temperatures.
Air source heat pumps can provide fairly low cost space heating. A high efficiency heat pump can provide up to four times as much heat as an electric resistance heater using the same amount of electricity. The lifetime cost of an air source heat pump will be affected by the price of electricity compared to gas (where available). Burning gas or oil will emit carbon dioxide and also nitrogen dioxide, which can be harmful to health. An air source heat pump issues no carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxide or any other kind of gas. It uses a small amount of electricity to transfer a large amount of heat: the electricity may be from a renewable source, or it may be generated from power stations which burn fossil fuel.
So, if you’d like to cut the cost of your heating, contact us today and we can either supply only, or supply and install UK countrywide