Join the Heat Pump Revolution for Savings and Efficiency

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Americans purchase 21% more heat pump units in 2023 than fossil gas furnaces, marking the second-consecutive year heat pumps out-sold furnaces in the US.¹ So, what are heat pumps, and why are businesses and homeowners alike choosing them for temperature control?

Heat pumps are systems that extract heat from one place and transfer it to another. The system includes a closed loop filled with refrigerant that is exposed to air, earth, or water, and connects to the heat pump unit, which has a compressor, evaporator, and condenser. The refrigerant absorbs heat where it is higher and releases it where temperatures are cooler, resulting in consistent, comfortable temperatures inside.

Heat pumps are better for the environment because they do not burn fossil fuels and use a small amount of electricity, reducing a business's carbon footprint. Ground source heat pumps are three times more energy efficient than gas furnaces, and air-source heat pumps improve energy efficiency by 50%.²'³

Heat pumps offer many other advantages. They are multipurpose, generating both heating and cooling. They are long-lasting, with a lifespan of up to 20-plus years, and are typically more reliable, requiring less repair and maintenance than gas furnaces and air conditioners, saving the business even more money over the lifespan of the unit.

Features and advantages of different heat pump types:

All heat pumps have some external source where they draw or distribute heat. The three primary types are:

  • Air-source heat pumps: The most common type of heat pump, the air-source heat pump, transfers heat from the outdoor air to indoors. These are often the most affordable and easiest to install, but extreme wintry weather conditions impact their performance.
  • Water-source heat pumps: These extract heat from water sources like wells, lakes, or ponds. They require an independent water loop system. More efficient than air-source, they require a suitable water source.
  • Ground-source/geothermal: Ground-source (geothermal) heat pumps transfer heat from the ground. The most efficient and reliable type of heat pump, ground-source pumps generate consistent cooling or heating, regardless of the outside temperature. They also have a higher upfront installation cost.

Deciding if a heat pump is right for your business:

Business and building owners will need to evaluate and balance several factors to determine if a heat pump is right for them, and if so, which type.

  • Size and need: The size of a property and its heating and cooling demands will determine the appropriate magnitude and capacity of the heat pump.
  • Climate: The climate plays a significant role in heat pump choice. Some heat pumps, particularly air-source, lose efficiency in very cold climates.
  • Suitable source: Water-source heat pumps require a suitable water source at the site, such as a pond or well. Geothermal pumps require an accessible location where installers can drill to install the loop.
  • Cost: Upfront installation costs vary, so business owners and managers must determine which unit is best for their budget.

What types of businesses benefit from heat pumps:

Once a novelty, heat pumps are becoming more widely accepted as more businesses install them and prove their effectiveness and efficiency.

  • Hotels and convention centers must constantly adjust the temperature of guest rooms, conference rooms, lobbies, restaurants, and other areas to ensure the comfort of their guests. Heat pumps can address these diverse needs, while conserving energy expenditure.
  • Retail businesses must closely monitor temperature controls for customers, but to also protect inventory.
  • Many office buildings are switching to heat pumps because of their ability to heat or cool different areas individually.
  • Industrial and manufacturing operations are using heat pumps to maintain proper temperature and humidity levels to protect their equipment and to ensure the comfort of employees.

Explore your heat pump options with Xcel Energy:

Experts estimate that businesses recover the cost of upgrading to heat pump cooling and heating systems within five to ten years, thanks to the long-term energy savings. Xcel Energy offers rebates to help reduce the upfront expense of upgrading to a heat pump system.

Talk with an Xcel Energy Business Solutions advisor at 855-839-8862.

1. Heat pumps outsold gas furnaces again last year — and… | Canary Media



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