A heat pump is a device that transfers heat from one location to another. Heat pumps are typically used to pull heat out of the air or ground to heat a home, office building etc… but they can be reversed to cool a building. One of the biggest advantages of a heat pump is that there is no need to install separate systems to provide heating and cooling. Heat pumps are also able to generate hot water.
Heat pumps work extremely efficiently because they simply transfer heat rather than burn fuel to create it. Because they move heat rather than generate it, they can provide up to four times the amount of energy they consume. In other words, a heat pump generates 4kWh of heat for every one kWh of electricity it uses.
There are different types of heat pumps: Air to water and ground source. Air to water heat pumps are popular because they can be integrated into your existing system, radiators or under floor heating. Air to water heat pumps can be used anywhere; they take up little space and are cheaper than ground source heat pumps. There are two varieties of air to water heat pumps, high and low temperature. Low temperature models are usually installed in new builds which are well insulated, often to comply with Part-L. As a rule of thumb, high temperature heat pumps are more suitable to retrofit sites. However, it is advisable to carry out insulation work before considering a heat pump. Heat pumps are not suitable for every retrofit project, sometimes solutions such as biomass and solar may be more appropriate.
It is advisable to ask your installer which solution is best for you. Companies such as Enerpower who provide a range of solutions, including Daikin heat pumps, can match the best solution to your particular site.