Written by Brad Crawford
The term heat pumps might make you think that these highly efficient HVAC appliances are used for heating only. In fact, heat pumps are very efficient at providing both heating and cooling, especially in an area of relatively high temperatures such as North Texas. Here is a brief overview of how heat pumps work to keep your home cool.
The basic function of a heat pump is to capture heat and move it from place to place. Air-source heat pumps capture and release heat in the air. Geothermal heat pumps use the ground as a source of heat and a place to expel heat. Water-source heat pum
ps use lakes, ponds, wells, aquifers or other water sources for moving heat.
Air-source heat pumps, the most common variety, contain five main components that allow heat to be absorbed and released: the condenser, evaporator, compressor, air handler and reversing valve. Heat transfer is accomplished using a liquid refrigerant that changes state from liquid to gas and back again, depending on where it is within the system. This change in state allows the refrigerant to absorb or release heat.
The refrigerant is contained inside two sets of copper coils, one inside your home and the other in the heat pump’s outdoor unit. The refrigerant circulates through the coils and moves in and out of your home. During cooling operations, the indoor coils capture heat and transfer it to the refrigerant, which evaporates into a gas. This hot gas is moved to the outdoor coils, where the gas is condensed and pressurized, causing it to return to a liquid state. The heat is released into the outdoor air as the refrigerant changes state. Inside your home, the air handlers circulate the cool air produced by this process. When heating is required, the reversing valve reverses the flow of refrigerant. The outdoor coils become the source of heat capture and the indoor coils the source of heat release.
Compared to standard central air conditioners and furnaces, heat pumps are very efficient and cost-effective sources of cooling and heating. They are reliable and sturdy pieces of equipment that hold up well to the stress of operation. They also run relatively quietly and cleanly.
Crawford Services, Inc. is one of the premier providers of HVAC services, including sales, installation and repair, in the Dallas and North Texas area. Contact us today for more information on heat pumps and how they can be used to provide excellent levels of cooling in the summer and heating in the winter.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in North Texas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).
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