Winter Is Coming!

Not only to fictional TV kingdoms, but also to Tasmania.

Heat pumps are the most efficient and popular electric heating solution for dealing with our Launceston winters.

Heat pumps don’t actually produce heat themselves.  They simply use refrigeration gasses and compressors to move heat from one place to another.  In winter they move heat from outside to inside your home, and in summer when you switch to air-conditioning mode, they move heat from inside your home to outside.

Heat pumps use electricity to operate, but they produce more energy, in the form of heat, than the amount of power consumed.  This efficiency advantage is what makes your heat pump cheaper to run than a conventional electric heater.

Before you install a heat pump there are a few things that should be checked:

Mains Cables – The size of your mains cables should be checked to make sure they will not be overloaded.

Switchboard – Is there room on your switchboard for additional main switches?

Size of heat pump – The heat pump capacity must be matched to the size of the area to be heated.

Location – The location of the indoor and outdoor units affects the performance of the system.   If the indoor unit is not correctly located then the heat will not be distributed to the areas required.  If the outdoor unit is not correctly located then performance of the system will suffer.

The ideal location for an outdoor unit is in an area that received early morning sun, so that it can start off with the warmest air available.

The location requirements of the two units can sometimes be in conflict.  The indoor and outdoor units should be as close together as possible and often the best compromise must be found.

Cost – Heat pump installs are often sold as a fixed price package, with retailers competing to offer the lowest price.  As you might expect, there are a number of potential problems with an installation where the lowest price is the main consideration.

The installer working for a low fixed fee does not have the time to make sure the indoor and outdoor units are placed in the best locations.  The units will be placed where they are easiest to install, with the pipe run as short as possible, to save money on labour and materials.

If your mains cables are small the installer may fit a load limiting circuit breaker to the switchboard without explaining the potential problems or offering you an alternative.

A load limiter will cut the power completely if the total load exceeds 40 amps for example  This means you may not be able to run your heat pump and your oven at the same time and certainly not make a cup of tea as well.  Nuisance tripping due to overloading means you will be constantly trudging out to the switchboard to reset the breaker.

The way to avoid these problems is to get an on-site inspection and a quotation based on the unique design and layout of your home and your personal requirements.

Contact Mance Electrical Launceston for a free on-site inspection and advice on the best heat pump solution for your home.

Phone 6331 4711 or send us an email using the form below.

 

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