3 Types of Heat from a Heat Pump

3 Types of Heat from a Heat Pump

Heat pump heat is efficient and reliable and also available in three types. Heat pumps offer both heating and cooling in a single unit, eliminating the need for a full-time standard furnace. Because these systems run entirely on electricity and don’t consume combustible fuel like natural gas, they release no emissions and require no venting or other precautions for toxic combustion byproducts.

In summer, a heat pump functions just like a conventional central A/C, extracting heat from the house at the indoor evaporator coil and moving it outdoors to be dispersed at the outdoor condenser coil. In winter, to ensure adequate heat is generated to keep the house warm no matter how low the temperature dips, three heating modes are available.

Standard Mode

When temperatures stay above about 25 degrees, Fahrenheit, the outdoor coil in a heat pump system extracts latent energy present in the air. Heat molecules are then compressed to generate temperatures sufficient to warm the house. Extracted outdoor heat is moved indoors in the system refrigerant flow, then released by the evaporator coil and circulated through household ductwork.

Supplemental Mode

During very cold weather, alternate heat may be required to maintain consistently warm indoor temperatures. In supplemental mode, the heat pump automatically activates a secondary heat source, usually electric resistance coils, to augment heating. In some cases, a standby gas furnace may be installed to temporarily take over the heating load—an arrangement known as a hybrid system. When outdoor temperatures rise and heat energy in the air is sufficient, the heat pump automatically shuts down supplemental heat and shifts back to standard mode.

Emergency Mode

If a critical component in the heat pump fails, the system will automatically shift to 100% reliance on alternate heat (electric coils or standby gas furnace) to continue heating. The system will stay in that mode until a qualified HVAC service technician makes necessary repairs. After components are replaced or repaired, the technician will restart the system in standard mode.

For more about the advantages and efficiency of heat pump heat, ask the professionals at Aggressive Mechanical.

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