Heat pumps utilize heat from the earth, water bodies or the atmosphere. These are mature, environment friendly technologies providing comfortable, fully automatic, low- noise installations, requiring little space.
How do heat pumps function?
Principally, heat pumps operate like refrigerators. Heat is extracted from the ground or ambient air and used inside the home. Typically, for every unit of electricity the heat pump uses, four units of energy are provided free from the ground thus reducing the total heating cost to the consumer. Key components are compressors and condensers and ground loops or air heat exchangers. These systems can be used with forced air or radiant heating. They can also be reversed to provide cooling in the summer months.
An environmentally safe refrigerant is used in a sealed system. The refrigerant alternates between the gaseous and liquid phase, which absorbs or releases heat with each phase change. This is used to warm or cool the house in a continuous process.