Heat Pumps in Littleton, CO
Most heating and air conditioning systems are set up in a similar way. A forced-air furnace and central air conditioner may share a blower fan and ductwork, but aside from that, their components work entirely separately. The indoor components of the air conditioner and the heater are housed in the same area, while the condenser unit for the air conditioner is located outdoors.
It turns out, though, that the components of an air conditioner can do the job of both systems, and can do so with great efficiency, with just a few extra valves. It’s called a heat pump, and it’s changing the way people see air conditioning and heating in Littleton, CO. Call Southwest Heating and Cooling today to learn more about heat pump installation, or to schedule your next service!
How a Heat Pump Works
A heat pump installation uses refrigerant to do the majority of the heat exchange process—even in the winter! A compressor and various valves help to move it along and add pressure, but the chemical blend called refrigerant is responsible for absorbing and releasing heat.
In the summer, the heat pump works just like any other central air conditioner. Refrigerant can pick up heat from the indoor air blowing over the evaporator coil and move this heat outside, continuing in this fashion in a cycle until the home is cooled. In the winter, the reversing valve allows refrigerant to change direction and heat to move into the home from the outdoor air.
Does This Work in Cold Weather?
When we tell people that a heat pump system absorbs heat from the air outside, they often have concerns. When it’s cold outside, how will a heat pump be able to gather heat from the outdoor air? Well, the truth is that there is heat energy present in the air even though it feels cold. Coldness is a lack of heat, not necessarily an absence of heat.
As temperatures drop below freezing, though, your heat pump can start to struggle. There are two ways to deal with this. One is with electric heating strips that activate when temperatures outside drop too low, but using this sort of electric resistance heating can be costly.
That’s why many people in our area choose dual fuel systems for heating and air conditioning. This combines a heat pump with a gas furnace to automatically switch to the most efficient heat source depending on the season!
Common Heat Pump Repairs
We talk a lot about how efficient and durable a heat pump is. We should also mention that any system, no matter how well–installed, needs repairs and replacement eventually. Heat pump maintenance helps to prevent many of the repair needs you may come across, so be sure to schedule tune–ups twice annually and consider our maintenance plan!
Common heat pump repairs include refrigerant leaks, electrical troubles, and problems caused by a clogged filter, all of which could be caught early with proper maintenance! Contact our team for heat pump installation in Littleton, CO, or any repairs or routine maintenance you need. We also install and service ductless heat pumps.