GARAGE CONVERSION AUDIT
STRUCTURAL LOFT CONVERSION AUDIT
PRE-PURCHASE FEASABILITY CONSULTATION
STEEL WORK CONNECTIONS
INTERIOR MINOR ALTERATIONS
CDM & ASSOCIATED REPORTS
HEALTH & SAFETY REPORTS
3D MODELLING (from)
SOIL INVESTIGATION REPORTS
AIR PRESSURE TESTING
BUILDING CONTROL APPLICATIONS
AIR TIGHTNESS TESTING
SOUND INSULATION TESTING
PART F VENTILATION TESTING
RENEWABLE ENERGY ADVICE & INSTALL
THERMOGRAPHIC SURVEYS & TESTING
CODE FOR SUSTAINABLE HOMES
PART G WATER CALCS
DOMESTIC EPC’S FOR LANDLORDS & HOMEOWNERS
Nowadays, heat pumps are gaining in popularity because they can independently heat and cool the space with great energy efficiency, offering significant savings on heating and cooling costs. However, a large number of models available on the market can make it difficult to choose the right one for your needs. We will try to make this selection easier for you with this guide.
So a heat pump is an air-conditioning and heating system that works year-round. In summer, it draws heat from the inside of your home and moves it outside, while in winter it collects heat from the outside air (because, even when it is cold in the air, there is some heat) and brings it into your home. If the heat from the air is insufficient, the heat pump through the electric heater heats the outside air.
On average, heat pumps last about 15 years, though there are some that last less, about a decade. Maintenance is an important factor in the life of a pump - the more you invest in maintaining it, the longer it will last. Also, note that a heat pump can noticeably increase the value of your home.
Often people are confused when it comes to the difference between a heat pump and an air conditioner. The heat pump can heat and cool, but the air conditioner cannot, which is the basic difference between the two HVAC systems in these appliances. The air conditioner, when used for heating, is usually paired with the furnace.
Types of heat pumps
There are three main types of heat pumps: air source, split-ductless and geothermal. All heat pumps operate on the same principles but collect heat from different sources. There are several subtypes to be distinguished: hybrid, solar and absorption, or gas heat pumps.
1. Air source heat pump
This is the most popular type of heat pump because it is cheap and does not take up a lot of space. The system consists of an indoor unit and an outdoor unit and works by extracting heat from the outside air and transferring it to the home.
2. The split-ductless heat pump (mini-split)
Such pumps contain two units: an external compressor and a maximum of four internal operators. These systems do not require ductwork, circulating refrigerants through the tubing that connects the indoor and outdoor units. These heat pumps are carefully designed, quiet, energy-efficient and can be controlled by remote control.
3. Geothermal heat pump
They are considered the ground and water pumps and do not require much maintenance. They transfer heat through a series of pipes that are buried in loops outside. In addition to temperature control, geothermal heat pumps also control humidity.
Choosing the right size
Failure to guess the right size for your heat pump can result in inflated energy costs, large fluctuations in temperature and humidity, and a short system cycle, so choose carefully. If your pump is too small, it will work too much to provide the amount of heat you need in your home, while the one that is too large will emit too much heat, resulting in inefficiency.
Physical mass is not as important as the unit's heating and cooling output. Generally, heat pumps range from 1.2 kW to over 10kW.
When selecting the size of a heat pump, note the following:
• whether it will be used mainly for heating or cooling purposes;
• the local climate, including average seasonal high and low temperatures;
• the level of insulation in your home;
• the size of your living space and the number of people living there.
It is best to hire a specialist to install such a complex system.
There are several ways to install:
1. Split system: the most common way of installing any ductless heat pump. The indoor evaporation unit is housed in the attic, basement or closet, while the condenser and compressor are located outside in a large metal box.
2. Package system: In this type of installation, all mechanical components are placed in a large metal box outside. It is different from the previous one because there is only ductwork inside the house.
3. Mini-split system: Also known as a ductless heat pump system, this system is great for houses without ducts. The system acts as a heat pump with an air source but on a smaller scale.
Generally speaking, heat pumps come with a warranty that lasts about 2-3 years. You can also get warranties, which usually last up to 10 years, and you may also have the option of extending the warranty (about 20 years), which many manufacturers will offer for free. This kind of warranty can mean having your maintenance checked annually and then thoroughly checked by a professional installer every 3-5 years.
Your installer should leave clear written details that record all maintenance checks. It is highly likely that you will even be required to perform annual controls on things such as air inlet grill and evaporator to ensure that they do not have leaves, growing plants or impurities.
It is also your installer's responsibility to advise you on checking the central heating pressure gauge in your home from time to time. This prevents the freezing of the heat pump in winter by using a freezing agent. If your heat pump has external cooling pipes, although this is rarely the case, they will need annual service from a cooling engineer.
However, heat pump systems have some disadvantages:
• larger radiators will be required about oil and gas boilers;
• work better with underfloor heating or hot air heating and work more efficiently in combination with larger radiators;
• they may take a long time to warm up;
• they need electricity if there is no access to solar or wind power;
• require high house surrounding (especially for lofts) for energy savings to exist;
• it is noisy while working, especially in winter;
• the cost of installing an air source heat pump is typically between £ 3,000 and £ 11,000.