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While heat pumps may not be the ideal heating solution for every situation, they do offer an energy-efficient alternative to your heating and cooling. We can service your existing heat pump, or offer our expert advice on whether or not a heat pump is good option for you.
How do they work?
Heat pumps are designed to control the direction of heat flow by absorbing heat from a cold space and release it to a warmer one, and vice-versa. They work much like your refrigerator, but in the opposite direction. It employs the same basic principle, but releases heat into the space rather than out to the surrounding environment. In use, heat pumps generally draw heat from the cooler external air or from the ground.
Types of Heat Pumps
Geothermal (ground-source or water-source) heat pumps achieve high efficiencies by transferring heat between your house and the ground or a nearby water source. They are the most costly type of heat pump to install, but cost less to operate. Whether a geothermal heat pump is appropriate for you will depend on the size of your lot, the subsoil, and the landscape. Ground-source or water-source heat pumps work well in extreme climates (like Michigan winters) than air-source heat pumps.
Here’s a video from energy.gov on how geothermal heat pumps work. You can also learn more about them on their website here
For homes without ducts, air-source heat pumps are also available in a ductless version called a mini-split heat pump. In addition, a special type of air-source heat pump called a “reverse cycle chiller” generates hot and cold water rather than air, allowing it to be used with radiant floor heating systems in heating mode.
A new type of heat pump for residential systems is the absorption heat pump, also called a gas-fired heat pump. Absorption heat pumps use heat as their energy source, and can be driven with a wide variety of heat sources.