Heat Pump Split System | Heat Pump Reviews

Heat Pumps make up one component of a split system central HVAC system. Similar to an outdoor Central Air Conditioner, the Heat Pump condensing unit is the large unit that sits on the outside of your home. Heat Pumps are 100% electric, yet they have the ability to not only cool your home like an air conditioner, but also provide heat when needed.  The most common configuration of a complete Heat Pump Split System, uses the outdoor heat pump condenser, matched to an air handler, with a built in evaporator coil. Heat Pump condensers also make up one half of the unit on Hybrid Heating systems.

How do Heat Pumps Work?

Heat pumps are designed to give you the best of both worlds! In the summer months when you need to cool your home, a heat pump works just like a central AC system. Compressing and circulating the cold refrigerant into the evaporator coil, where it chills the coil and recycles your inhome air… except cooler. During the process, the refrigerant expands and soaks up the heat from the air being moved by the blower, where it is ultimately pumped back out to the condenser and chilled again.

In the cooler months however, the heat pump does something no air conditioner can do, it reverses itself! The addition of the reversing valve allows the reverse process to occur and a heat pump will instead extract heat from the OUTSIDE air, pump it through the indoor coil where the same process above occurs. This time though, warm refrigerant (Not to be confused with HOT) passes through the coil and when the air being circulated from the blower passes over it, thus transferring that heat into the conditioned air on the supply side. Wikipedia has a pretty extensive writeup of the process used in heat pumps.

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