Ottawa Heat Pumps

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TIP: Ductless Heat Pumps are a great solution for homes heated with electrical baseboard heating that lack the ductwork system to distribute through a central heating unit.

What is a Heat Pump?

Heat pumps commonly use an outside source of air to evaporate or condense the refrigerant. These are known as air-to-air Heat Pumps. They operate differently in the heating or cooling cycles, reversing the evaporation of the condensing process from indoors to outdoors, transferring the heat. Essentially, they are air conditioners, with the added ability to reverse the refrigerant flow and to the condensing or evaporating cycle. Split air-to-air Heat Pump Systems are comprised of both an outdoor unit, which will collect or discharge heat. A Heat Pump is composed of a compressor, outdoor coil, fan, and reversing valve, all of which are normally located within the outdoor unit. In some instances, compressors are located on a third indoor section of a house.

Most air-to-air Heat Pumps are installed along with an existing secondary, or backup heat source. This secondary heating can be provided by an oil or gas furnace, or a simple air handling unit with electric elements or an additional hydronic coil that can transfer extra heat via a hot water supply.

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Other Types of Heat Pumps

All types of heat pumps in Ottawa are typically designed to provide comfort year-round. In the colder months they pump heat inside while in the warmer months they remove heat from the home interiors. However the main distinguishing factor between heat pumps is typically the type of source of heat or where they dissipate it. Besides air to air heat pumps, the other types of heat pumps include air to water, ground source or geothermal, which can also be water-to-water. 

A geothermal water-to-water heat pump functions much like an air source heat pump with the only difference being that it extracts and dissipates heat through the medium of water. More specifically, a water source heat pump in Ottawa uses water in a closed ground loop or 2 wells in a open loop system as the source to transfer heating or cooling to water, which is then distributed to the home via a hydronic coil and air handling unit. A great advantage offered by a water-to-water heat pump is that it can also be used to heat water for domestic use.

In contrast, an air source heat pump in Ottawa draws heat from the outside air to keep the temperatures within warm and extracts and circulates heat outside in the summer. An astonishing fact is that even in the colder months, the external air contains heat! It offers the basis for the working of air-source heat pumps which are commonly used in Canada.

A ground source heat pump in Ottawa uses the earth, ground water, or both to extract heat in the winter and reverses the operation in the warmer months. A significant benefit of these heat systems is that their operation is not affected by the extreme temperature fluctuations as they use the ground as the source of heat. For the same reason, they’re also one of the most efficient types of heating systems available.

Generally speaking, a significant advantage of all heat pumps in Ottawa or for that matter anywhere else in the world is that the direction the refrigerant is pumped through the system determines whether the indoor coils are either hot or cold.

The advanced design and efficiency of today’s cold climate heat pumps such as the Lennox Signature Series and Mitsubishi ZUBA Central Heat Pumps make them a much better option than Oil or Propane. Even with a Gas Furnace, a “Dual Fuel” system allows the heat pump to operate at times when it is the more efficient heat source, while the Gas Furnace takes over when it may be more suited to do so in extreme cold temperatures. The overall energy savings can be significant. Typical savings can repay the small difference between an air conditioner and a heat pump in Ottawa in a surprisingly short time-frame.

Differences Between Central Heat Pumps and Ductless Heat Pumps...

Central Heat Pump Operation

Connects to Ventilation System

Ductless Heat Pump Operation

No Ducts Required

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