How air source heat pumps can save energy and money
You might not have heard of an air source heat pump before. So, we thought it would be a good idea to let you know a bit about their benefits and how they work. We use them in every innerspace home for two major reasons.
Why air source heat pumps?
Our goal is to build homes that can help people and the planet. By building homes that can tackle climate change directly we can reduce a home’s carbon footprint on our planet. It also makes our homes more affordable for their owners to run. We focus on introducing green, clean technology where we can. We use technology that directly reduces the consumption of fossil fuels, replacing them with cleaner, more natural alternatives. Our chosen alternatives are available to everyone every day, like solar energy and air.
If you have a gas or oil heating system costing you the earth, both literally and figuratively, the air source heat pump could be the solution for you.
What is an air source heat pump?
Air source pumps serve as an alternative way to heat your home. They allow us to generate hot water or warm air, by making the most of the free heat in the air outside our house. Think of them like a big fridge in reverse!
The air source heat pump uses the same technology that cools our fridges, just on a larger scale and in reverse. Whereas a fridge removes energy from a well-insulated box and transfers it on the outside, a heat pump takes the energy in the outside air, converts it to heat and transfers it into our well insulated house, keeping it warm.
How do air source heat pumps work?
Heat is essentially energy on the move. When it comes to keeping our houses warm – the exchange of thermal energy means that energy naturally moves from a high temperature to a low temperature. An air source heat pump just reverses this process, using thermodynamics to pull air from outside, warm it up and then feed into your house.
On the outside of an air source heat pump you will find a system of coils with refrigerant in it over which the outside air is drawn using a fan. The liquid in the refrigerant coils absorbs all the heat (heat energy can be extracted as low as -25 degrees), then evaporates it and compresses it, increasing the temperature dramatically.
The coil then passes this gained heat inside where it is pumped into either air ducts or passed around the house into your radiators or underfloor heating system.
Why we choose air source heat pumps for all our homes
1. Air source heat pumps save you money - more bang for your buck!
For every 1 kWh of energy input, a heat pump can deliver typically c3-4 kWh’s in energy output, which is an energy efficiency ratio of 300- 400%. To be considered 'renewable' (under EU legislation) heat pumps must have an energy efficiency of at least 2.5 times (200%). This is far superior than energy efficiency boiler systems, where conventional boiler systems can only reach an efficiency ratio of up to 95%, or to put it simply; they consume more energy than they can ever deliver.
According to Ofgem, in July 2011 an average house (3 bed semi of 1000sq ft.) uses 20,500 kWhrs of gas to heat the house and hot water. The average boiler is 83.5% efficient so it produces 17,015kWhrs of heat. This represents a Gas bill of £998 for heating and hot water and Electric bill of £462 per year for lighting, domestic appliances etc. (Assumes 4.9p/kWhr for gas and 14p/kWhr for electricity)
How much would a heat pump cost to heat the same house?
To provide 17,015kWhrs of heat with an energy efficiency ratio of 3.127 we would need to use 5,441kWhrs of electricity, this would cost £761. This would offer a saving of £237 or 23% against a modern gas boiler.
2. Air source heat pumps are better for our planet
Today, two-thirds of UK homes are heated with a gas boiler. With domestic reserves depleting, the UK has become a net importer of natural gas, exposing us to the volatility and uncertainty of supply. In the meantime, renewable energy generation has become more efficient and offers carbon friendly and reliable alternatives.
Heat pumps are powered exclusively by electricity. This means that there are no emissions on site, since all the emissions from electricity generation are produced at source. Using electrically-powered, efficient heat pumps creates huge savings in carbon emissions, and this saving will only increase in the future due to the further decarbonisation of the electricity grid via growing solar and wind sources.
Most importantly though, an air source heat pump can lower your carbon footprint as it uses a renewable, natural source of heat – and one that’s free, AIR and the energy that’s in it! Also, they don’t really create anything! all they do is take external air, heat it up and transfer it indoors. Think about that as opposed to the fossil fuel intensive production processes for getting main stream oil and gas to a home.
The average household in the UK emits 2.7 tonnes of CO2 every year from heating their home. So, by providing highly efficient homes where heating needs can be provided by renewable electricity, we can really start to make progress to lower carbon housing and a healthier planet.
Find out more about the sustainable and green technology we use in our homes.
Get in touch with our team today to arrange a consultation and to join our waiting list.