The Theory behind the technology of heat pumps has been around since the 1800’s. However, even though Robert C. Webber developed and built the first ground source heat pump for a residential setting in 1948, they did not gain widespread use until the last several decades.
That is hardly the case now as hundreds of thousands of homeowners choose to heat or cool their homes with heat pumps. They are clearly the most popular choice among heating and cooling choices now. Why is this? Let’s take a look at some of the many benefits that heat pumps have to offer.
Heating and Cooling Dual Function
Unlike gas, oil and some other forms of home heating devices, heat pumps perform the dual functions of both heating and cooling. This dual function is excellent for homes located in regions of a country that experience both hot and cold weather (such as Edmonton and Calgary, Alberta). The homeowner saves money by not having to have separate heating and cooling systems.
Good for the Environment
Heat pumps have a lot of benefits when it comes to the environment. They do not burn fossil fuels (e.g., oil and gas) and oxygen to heat and cool homes. When furnaces burn fossil fuels, they release harmful CO2 and other by-products into the air. Burnt oil and gas also produce soot and other types of harmful and heavy exhaust. Heat pumps leave a small environmental footprint with the electricity they consume every day; even if they leak refrigerant these days, the new type of refrigerant is not harmful to the ozone layer.
Very Safe to Operate
Since heat pumps do not burn fossil fuels, it also makes then much safer than their oil and gas burning counterparts. There is always the risk of fire with oil or gas furnaces due to the nature of how they work. On the other hand, heat pumps pose an extremely minimal risk for fire because they do not require a burning process to produce heat. Oil and gas furnaces also produce harmful CO2 as was mentioned before. Contractors install heat pumps outside the house, which adds to their safety, whereas oil and gas heating systems are inside systems.
Less Space Required
Heat pumps take up less space upon installation than their oil and gas counterparts. Since they are placed outside the home instead of inside, like oil and gas furnaces, they also tend to be much easier to install.
Recent advances in technology have also made heat pumps a lot more energy efficient than they used to be. Nowadays they are more efficient than gas and oil for the amount of heat they generate per dollar of operating cost.
With all their benefits, any homeowner would be smart to consider heat pumps in their new home or when replacing an old heating system.