How Air Source Heat Pumps Actually Work – in 60 Seconds (or less)!

In less than a minute, you’ll discover how air source heat pumps extract heat from the air outside to heat your home. The technology is surprisingly simple and by using renewable energy to heat your home, you won’t have large energy bills.

The heat source

When you’re wrapped up against the bitter chill, you’ll find it hard to believe that there is still heat in the air and that your air source heat pump can extract it and use it to heat your home.

The technology is similar to that used by your refrigerator to keep the temperature in the fridge cooler than the inside of your home, but in reverse.

The air source heat pumps can extract heat from air as cold as -15°C, although many of the latest models and equipment to the market can extract heat from air as cold as -25°C – not a temperature we often experience in the UK, thankfully.

It’s a short, efficient three-stage process:

  1. Extract: the air source heat pump absorbs the heat in the air outside, which turns the refrigerant liquid inside the air source heat pump into a gas.

  2. Heat: this gas then passes through a compressor, which increases the pressure and temperature.

  3. Circulate: the heated gas refrigerant is then passed through a heat exchanger which then heats your heating system and hot water circuits in your home, providing you with a pleasant level of heat and hot water.

Constant, low level of heat

To get the best from an air source heat pump, you need to have an appreciation of not just the physical process of how it extracts heat from the air but how to use the system to its maximum efficiency.

For millennia in the UK we have relied on non-renewable energy like coal and oil. These reserves are running low, as we know, and as a result they’re becoming increasingly expensive. But in other European countries and in Scandinavia, the way they heat their homes is quite different and is something we can learn from.

Air source heat pumps are at their most efficient when they are continually extracting heat from the air, pumping a pleasant ambient heat through your home. Efficient at lower temperatures, your home will never feel cold and you won’t miss the big energy bills either.

You’ll still need electricity to run the air source heat pump, but with 25% energy input, you’ll get 75% free energy back, so that’s 3 times the energy out than goes in.  

Making the right choice for you

Air source heat pumps are just one solution that could work for you and your home. Like all renewable energy solutions, it pays to insulate your home as much as possible before investing in something like an air source heat pump.

There are different system options, all of which the team at MAAC can discuss with you when you call to find out more.

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