Heat pumps are unique systems that can both heat and cool your home.
Unlike other heating systems, heat pumps don’t actually create heat... instead, they absorb heat from the air and transfer it.
How it works:
Below, we’ll break down the main components of a heat pump system and how those components work together to heat or cool your home.
“Refrigerant” travels through the heat pump system inside refrigerant lines (copper coils).
Refrigerant is a special heat-transfer substance. Think of refrigerant as a sponge that absorbs heat from the surrounding air and then wrings that heat out either inside or outside of the home.
The compressor is the “heart” of the heat pump system and pumps the refrigerant through the system.
The outdoor unit consists of a condensing coil and a large fan. The condensing coil contains either very hot or very cold refrigerant (depending on whether the system is in cooling or heating mode). The fan helps speed up the heat transfer process.
The indoor unit (air handler) contains an evaporator coil and fan. The indoor unit works much the same way as the outdoor unit. In heat mode, the fan moves air across the coils (this time picking up the heat from the coils) and blows the now-warm air into the ducts of your home.
Reversing Valve (not pictured above)
The reversing valve is a small valve that sits in the outside unit and reverses the flow of refrigerant. When the refrigerant flow is reversed, the heat pump switches from heating to cooling mode (and vice versa).
As mentioned above, heat pumps transfer heat from one source to another. To help explain, let's look at how a heat pump works in heating mode.
Step 1: The condensing coils of an outdoor unit contain something called refrigerant. Refrigerant lines act as a sponge, absorbing heat from the outside air.
Step 2: Once the refrigerant lines have absorbed this heat, the refrigerant is pushed towards the indoor unit.
Step 3: In the indoor unit, a fan blows air over the evaporator coil, which contains the refrigerant. The hot refrigerant inside the evaporator coil heats the air. The hot air is then pushed into your home via air ducts.
Step 4: Over time, the refrigerant loses its heat and travels back to the outdoor unit to pick up more heat to bring into your home.
Note: A heat pump uses this same process—in reverse—to cool your home. Instead of absorbing heat from the outdoor air, refrigerant absorbs heat from the air inside your home and then dumps it outside.
Now that you know the ins-and-outs of how a heat pump works, you may be wondering whether or not heat pumps are a good option for your Phoenix home.
A few pros to choosing a heat pump are:
A few cons to choosing a heat pump are:
Are you ready to install a heat pump? Our team of experts is here to help. When you hire us to install your heat pump, you can rest assured that any tech who comes to your home is professionally trained and certified.