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Efficient and Eco-Friendly Hot Water Heat Pumps

Environment and Energy Saving Benefits of Hot Water Heat Pumps

One of the most cost-efficient and eco-friendly ways to provide domestic hot water is through the use of hot water heat pumps. While most electric hot water systems for the home use resistance element technology, they are not energy efficient. In order to gain significant savings in utility costs, you need a hot water system with a far more efficient and advanced design. This is where heat pumps come in.

Some of the most interesting characteristics of a hot water heat pump include

  • Use of a compressor mechanism similar to refrigerators, except that the configuration is in reverse
  • A refrigerator transfers heat from the inside to the outside, while a hot water heat pump transfers heat from the surroundings into a tank of water
  • Due to this reverse effect, a hot water heat pump cools a room as it heats water, helping to reduce air conditioning costs
  • This same configuration allows a hot water heat pump to work efficiently even in freezing temperatures

How Hot Water Heat Pumps Work

The one big advantage of hot water heat pumps over conventional electric heaters is energy efficiency. While a conventional heater uses 100 percent of its energy to produce heat, a hot water heat pump is more than twice as efficient.

This is because, unlike a conventional water heater, a heat pump doesn’t use its energy to produce heat, but rather to transfer heat. Acting like a refrigerator in reverse, a heat pump channels heat from the immediate environment into a water tank. Thus a hot water heat pump is able to transfer far more heat, using far less energy than a conventional electric heater. Studies show that a properly installed heat pump can reach an efficiency level of up to 250 percent.

Here’s how hot water pumps work:

  • The heat pump draws in air from the surroundings. The air is then stored in a special container called the evaporator. Inside the evaporator is an ozone-friendly refrigerant responsible for generating heat
  • The refrigerant vaporises. The refrigerant has an extremely low boiling point of negative 26 degrees Celsius. Thus the surrounding air coming into contact is enough to make the refrigerant boil and become vapour within the heat pump’s tubing.
  • Refrigerant vapour is compressed. The vaporised refrigerant is then pumped through a tiny valve. This process compresses the gas causing it to produce a tremendous amount of heat.
  • Heat is transferred to the water tank. The heat the refrigerant produced is then transferred to the water tank, via a heat exchanger
  • The refrigerant cools. As heat is transferred from the heated tubes to the water tank, the refrigerant’s temperature begins to drop, returning it into its former liquid state. The refrigerant is then channelled back through the heat pump where the cycle repeats once again.

Solar Augmented Heat Pumps

As if 250 percent efficiency isn’t good enough, you can enhance your hot water system’s performance even further by integrating it with solar panels to boost the whole system’s capacity. It’s a winning combination that outperforms all other heat pumps.

On warmer months when heating demands are minimal, the solar panels can be used to provide heat, thereby saving on electricity.

Summer, spring, autumn or winter, when you install a solar-assisted heat pump, you can easily save up to 60 percent on your energy bills.

Greener Environment

Heat pumps are energy efficient, but using solar power to drive the system makes it even more efficient and eco-friendly. With this kind of configuration, your carbon footprint is practically zero.

Solar Augmented Systems are Quiet

Unlike traditional heating systems that can emit a loud sound, solar augmented hot water heat pumps run virtually noise-free. That, plus the fact that they require minimal power to work makes them an excellent, yet affordable, investment for you home.

Healthier Indoor Environment

Traditional heating systems, where air is blown through vents, can harbor moulds, bacteria, dust, debris and other minute particles. These indoor air contaminants are the chief causes of allergies, asthma, sinusitis and other health problems. Have your heating system checked by an expert. It may be time to upgrade to a hot water heat pump system, or better still, a solar assisted one.

A hot water heat pump system is your answer for those cold winter months when you need 24-hour heating to keep you warm and cosy at home. If you dread the feel of cold walls and floors in winter, then a hot water heat pump system is the way to go.

Long Term Benefits

Given that the heat pump’s design is more complex that conventional water heaters, it is also more expensive. A high quality heat pump can easily cost a few thousand dollars. But, with this system, you can get back your investment in as little as two years, thanks to its tremendous energy-saving capabilities!

To learn more about hot water heat pumps, solar assisted heat pumps and possible rebates on these systems, visit Solar Ark’s website at http://www.solarark.com.au/ or call 1300 670 966.

SolarArk is a certified, manufacturer and supplier of solar hot water systems and evacuated solar hot water tubes in Australia. We specialise in custom designed solar hot water systems to deliver unparalleled quality and cater to your unique requirements.

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