What is the benefit of having a heat pump installation?
Heat pumps do in fact save your money on energy costs.
Because a heat pump only uses electricity for power rather than for the generation of heat, it offers a remarkably high-efficiency rate. When using traditional resistive electric heat – such as electric baseboards or space heaters, for instance – the amount of heat generated is proportional to the amount of electricity used: one unit of heat per unit of electricity for 100% efficiency.
With a heat pump, the efficiency rate goes up dramatically because the electricity consumed is only used to power the two fans (evaporator and condenser), compressor, and pump to concentrate heat outside and bring it into your home. Because of this, heat pumps are capable of providing more than 3 units of heat for every unit of electricity used for efficiency rates of over 300%. With Maine’s average winter temperatures of 37 degrees, the seasonal efficiency rate of the Mitsubishi Hyper Heat is right around 285%
This means lower electricity bills for a comfortable home – heat pumps are very inexpensive to run, increasing your electric bill by an average of $75 monthly per heat pump that is constantly running in the home. If you are using a heat pump along with a primary heating system such as oil, gas or electric, you’ll find extra savings by using the heat pump to offset the primary fuel use: one heat pump can offset up to 300 gallons of oil in a typical home, saving money on expensive fossil fuels. Plus, heat pumps will help in this way to reduce your home’s carbon footprint.
How does a heat pump affect my heating and electricity bills?
Heat Pumps will raise your electricity bill – but lower your costs for other heating fuels.
Every single unit (often referred to as a one-to-one) heat pump that is used daily will increase your electricity bill by $50 to $100 per month. However, the heat pump will reduce your heating fuel bill accordingly – for a typical household that uses 800 gallons of oil per year, a heat pump can reduce the amount of oil used by 300 gallons. If oil costs $2.75 per gallon, the price per million BTU (British Thermal Units, the standard measure of heat in the US) would be $28.06. To get the same amount of heat, 1 million BTU, from a heat pump with the current standard electric rate of 14.5 cents per kilowatt hour, would cost you $14.71. In other words, heating your home with a heat pump is equivalent to heating your home with oil for $1.44 per gallon, or for 48% less.
What are the benefits of a heat pump when used with solar electricity?
The benefit of solar panels is that during the day when the sun is shining, your rooftop panels are harvesting solar energy and converting that energy to be used in your home as electricity. In many homes, power generated by the array that is not used in the home is credited back to you by your electric utility company and is used to offset your electric bill at the end of each month. Most homes will still have an electricity bill for power used overnight, during storms, or during periods of high use such as very hot periods of summer.
However, your heat pump is powered by electricity – and when you pair solar panels for electricity with heat pumps for heat (which use electricity for power), you are heating your home for an average of about 9 cents per kWh vs. 14.5 cents per kWh without solar, effectively reducing your cost to run your heat pump by almost 40% annually.