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Answers to common queries about Heat Pumps

We like to keep our customers informed about every step of the process of purchasing and owning a Heat Pump. Please find below some answers to regular enquiries we receive. If you'd like to ask a question please feel free to contact us any time.

How does a heat pump work?

Heat pumps do not create heat; they simply move available heat from one place to another. An outdoor unit absorbs warmth from the surrounding air and transfers it into your home.

Winter/Heating:  In heating mode the outdoor units heat exchanger is used to absorb heat energy from the surrounding outdoor air using refrigerant as the heat transfer medium.

The hot refrigerant is pumped through copper pipes to the indoor units heat exchanger and the heat energy is transferred to the cooler indoor room air as the air passes over the indoor heat exchanger warming the room.

Summer/Cooling: In cooling mode the indoor units heat exchanger is used to absorb heat energy from the indoor room air using refrigerant as the heat transfer medium cooling the room air.

The refrigerant is then sucked back to the outdoor unit through copper pipes and the heat energy is rejected into the surrounding air outside via the outdoor units heat exchanger.

Why are heat pumps better than other forms of heating?

Because a heat pump only uses electricity for power rather than for the generation of heat, it offers a high efficiency rate. When using traditional electric heat – such as electric baseboard or space heaters, for instance – the amount of heat generated is proportional to the amount of electricity used: one unit of heat per unit of electricity for 100% efficiency.

With a heat pump, the efficiency rate goes up dramatically because the electricity consumed is only used to power the two fans (evaporator and condenser), compressor, and pump to concentrate heat outside and bring it into your home.  Because of this, heat pumps are capable of providing more than 3 units of heat for every unit of electricity used for efficiency rates over 300%.  

This means lower electricity bills for a comfortable home – heat pumps are very inexpensive to run.  Plus, heat pumps will help in this way to reduce your home’s carbon footprint.

What size heat pump will I need for my home?

In order to get the most out of your heat pump, it's important to know that one size does not fit all. Choosing the right model for your space, using it correctly and regular maintenance could see you saving on those winter power bills for years to come.  This is where a qualified installer is invaluable, we will come and give a free no obligation quote after assessing the space and area you require heated.

​ How much does it cost to run a heat pump?

A heat pump's running costs depend on how long you use it and its energy output. According to energywise.govt.nz,a heat pump used 6 hours per day for 6 months of the year with an energy output of 6KwH will cost around $400 per year to run.

So, if you use a heat pump instead of an equivalent electric heater in your living space it can save you around $500 a year.

Are heat pumps any good for asthma sufferers?

Living in a dry and warm environment is good for everyone, but for people with respiratory conditions, it is vital for them to stay well.  Fujitsu’s advanced Catechin Filters are approved by the Asthma and Respiratory Foundation NZ’s Sensitive Choice® programme. Fujitsu is also the only Heat Pump brand recommended by Asthma New Zealand. So you know you’ll be getting the advanced filters you need to reduce the incidence of asthma and allergy triggers in your home.

How long does it take to install a heat pump?

A standard back to back installation will take around 3-4 hours to install. 

Are heat pumps noisy?

That really depends on what you consider noisy, some heat pumps are quieter than others but it can also depend on a lot of other variables as described below.

A larger capacity heat pump will make more noise than a smaller one.  Noise is directly related to the amount of air the heat pump is moving.  To produce more heat, larger units need to move more air than smaller units.  

Sound levels for the correctly sized heat pump, operating in its normal condition, should be compared and referenced against the following guide:

  • 10 dB(A) = Gentle breathing
  • 25 dB(A) = Approximate limit of human hearing
  • 30 dB(A) = Whisper
  • 40 dB(A) = Interior of a library
  • 50 dB(A) = Running water
  • 60 dB(A) = Normal conversation

What is involved in a service and if I clean the filters regularly, do I still need one?

A service involves more than cleaning filters, here's a list of what's included in a basic service:

Indoor unit

  • clean the indoor unit which may require removing the front face depending on how dirty it is
  • test & check the drain make sure it's free from any blockages
  • clean filters down & spray with our filter cleaning product
  • check the electrical compartment, tighten the terminations which can become loose over time very important to prevent arching from loose connections
  • check remote operation

Outdoor unit

  • clean the outdoor down
  • make sure grass hasn't overgrown through the unit customer to be advised to weed kill as we will remove what we can
  • spray the coil with rust proof coil cleaner 
  • tighten cable connections
  • check there is sufficient silicone around required water tight areas such as the outdoor switch, pipe entry as over time silicone can fail in harsh weather conditions

We will check the overall running of your unit and make sure it is running at correct temperatures. 

Extra costs: gas refill, leak repair, electrical faults, lots of grass on the outdoor, replacing of any parts. You will be advised of any issues or extra costs before any work commences. 

Our quotes are free, there is no charge.

 

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