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F.H. Furr's Plumbing, Heating, Cooling & Electrical Insider Blog

Helpful Heat Pumps Tips!

First tip - all heat pumps are not created equal. When you are thinking about buying a new heating or air conditioning system there are many different factors you should consider! 

With a cost-effective and dependable heat pump, you can rest-assured that your energy bills will be much lower and your heating/cooling system will require much less maintenance. Your system will keep your home at the climate that is most comfortable for you and your family. So sit back, set your programmable thermostat and enjoy.

How Does a Heat Pump Work?

A heat pump is used not only to heat your home in the winter but also to cool your home in the summer. It does not use an electrical element or burn fuel to produce heat, but uses the same principle as a refrigerator and air conditioner, which is the Freon evaporation cycle. A heat pump system combined with a natural gas or propane furnace allows you to switch to the cheapest heat source depending on the market prices.

When you are researching the internet you will see a lot of terms that might seem foreign if you are not familiar with the HVAC world. We have made a user friendly list to help with any confusion you may have!

Heat Pump System Terms

  • HSPF:  The Heating Seasonal Performance Factor is a measure of the heating efficiency of a heat pump. The higher the HSPF number, the more efficiently the heat pump heats your home.
  • SEER:  SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) is the measure of efficiency by which the cooling process of air conditioners and heat pumps is rated. The higher the SEER rating, the greater the efficiency – and therefore greater energy savings.
  • Refrigerant:  R-410a (also known as Puron) is an environmentally-sound refrigerant designed to not harm the earth’s ozone layer. Federal law requires that all manufacturers phase out R-22 (better known as Freon) and other ozone-depleting refrigerants in the next few years. R-410a refrigerant is approved by the US Environmental Protection Agency as a replacement for R-22.
  • Standard Blower:  A standard blower delivers a specified amount of air flow based on a tap setting.
  • Variable-Speed Blower:  A high efficiency blower that is designed to deliver a varying amount of air flow based on the desired outcome. These blowers increase the effectiveness of humidification, dehumidification, air filtration and balance of air flow.
  • Humidification:  This is the process of adding moisture to the air by using a whole house humidifier. During the winter months, heated air can make your house too dry. Adding moisture protects your furnishings and reduces static electricity. Coupling a humidifier to a variable-speed blower gives you the ability to manage your humidity to the exact level you would like.
  • Dehumidification Mode:  The process of varying air flow and compressor operation can allow certain air conditioning applications to manage exact indoor humidity levels.
  • Electric Heat Staging:  The ability to bring the electric back-up heat in stages as opposed to coming on all at once.

Here are few Frequently Asked Questions that you might have too. 

Why is my heat pump blowing cold air?

Because a person’s body temperature is 98.6 degrees, a heat pump running at a normal 90 degrees may feel cold to the touch. Even though this is cold to the touch, it is sufficient to heat your home to 70 degrees. As long as your thermostat is registering normally, your system is most likely running normally.

Does my heat pump have an emergency heat setting?

Most likely. However, because emergency heat is a powerful source of heat and very expensive, it is typically only used if an outdoor pump has failed. Should you set the heat to the ‘E’ setting, the emergency heat will come on automatically.

What can I do to protect/clean my outdoor unit?

Trim plants and bushes around the unit to provide at least twelve (12) inches of clearance for air flow. Keep pets away from the outdoor unit, as the acid in pet urine is a corrosive that will deteriorate the metal. Have the unit services annually to maintain cleanliness and ensure proper air flow.

To see more FAQ’s visit our website at https://www.fhfurr.com/services/heating/heat-pumps 

Now, when the time is right and you are ready to either install or replace your system let our friendly and experienced team of Comfort Consultants give you a free Home Comfort System Analysis. They’ll study and discuss any concerns/problems that you may have with your current comfort system. They’ll review all system recommendation options and help you with finding the best home comfort system that meets all your family’s needs and budget.

Topics: Home Investment Heat Pumps HVAC System