FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How does a heat pump work?
Heat pumps (or "reverse cycle air-conditioners") heat your home using the same technology as a refrigerator - but in reverse. They take heat from the air outside the house and transfer that heat inside using the vapour compression refrigeration cycle. An important distinction between traditional home heating options and a heat pump is this: Because they extract existing heat from the outside air, heat pumps don't actually use electricity to generate heat - which means they can be radically cheaper to operate than a battery of traditional heaters.

Do heat pumps just "heat"? Are they air conditioners as well?
Heat pumps are Air Conditioners that literally "pump heat". That means they can pump heat from outside into your home to warm you in winter; and vice-versa - pumping heat out of your home in summer.

What is an “Inverter”? Is it a heat pump?
An Inverter is a piece of technology that makes newer heat pumps more efficient. Older style heat pumps operate a fixed speed compressor motor. These motors are either on or off, so they stop and start repetitively to keep the temperature at the level you set it - similar to a fan heater set on a thermostat. Newer, inverter style heat pumps use a variable-speed compressor motor that slows down and speeds up as required to maintain a more consistent temperature. This makes them more energy efficient. In fact, Inverter Heat Pumps are extremely efficient, meeting or exceeding the most stringent Energy Efficiency Ratings. Heat pumps are Air Conditioners that literally “pump heat”. That means they can pump heat from outside into your home to warm you in winter; and vice-versa - pumping heat out of your home in summer. As soon as an inverter air conditioner is switched on, it provides the exact amount of power needed to rapidly cool or heat of the room. This enables it to reach the set temperature in about a quarter the time required by non-inverter models. So you’re comfortable soon after you arrive home on a hot summer day, or after entering a room on a cold winter morning.

What is the difference between a Single-Split and a Multi-Split Heat Pump?
A single-split heat pump consists of a single internal “fan” unit matched to a single external “condenser” unit, designed to heat the room it is sized for and installed into. Although some heat may flow into other areas, It is unlikely to effectively heat your whole house. If you want to heat other areas of the house you may be better to consider a multi-split system, where a single outdoor unit powers up to four indoor units. This kind of setup can save space and power and cuts down on potential noise, but requires careful selection and installation.

What is ENERGY STAR?
EECA (New Zealand’s Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority) promotes the blue ENERGY STAR® mark, which is applied to certain Heat Pumps to tell you which are the most energy efficient models in each range. By choosing an ENERGY STAR® qualified unit, you will be assured of the very best efficiency and maximum savings on your heating costs.

Will my heat pump still work if it’s below freezing outside?
Even when it gets down below zero degrees, there is still “warmth” in the air that can be utilised. In New Zealand a good quality heat pump should perform effectively when the temperature drops below zero degrees Celsius, provided it is sized and installed correctly. In colder climates the outside unit may frost over during the coldest part of the year, this is normal operation and your Heat Pump will automatically stop and carry out a de-frost cycle before returning to its normal operation. Most heatpumps operate below zero degrees, with some units operating right down to -15ºC.

How should I know the right size of heat pump for my house?
The size of the heat pump you depends on the amount of heat that will be transferred to your home during winter and out of it during summer months. It also depends on the size of your house. To get a correct heat pump size for your house, click here to arrange an in home consultation.

Are there any factors that will affect the efficiency of heat pump installed in my house?
The potential of heat loss through windows, doors, roof, and walls plus insufficient insulation can affect the amount of heating. When there is proper insulation, you will only need a smaller heat pump this can save you electricity.

How will you determine what type of heat pump is good for my house and can I make any suggestions pertaining to it?
We value your preferences so yes; you can give your suggestions. We can also work on your budget. Our engineers consider the size, and age of your house, whether it is properly insulated, how high your ceiling is, your window type, or if it’s feasible to install pipe overhead or underground and outside your house. The location of the condensing also depends on the space, nearness to neighbours, closeness of fences, and means of fixing it.

What are the different types and styles heat pumps?
There are many types of heat pumps depending on kilowatt sizes and features. For every situation, there is a heat pump model that’s ideal for you. However, you can select the type and features you want in your heat pump and even what brand you prefer. Let us know about it to help us prepare our recommendations and quotation.

Do heat pumps require plenty of space?
In fact, they don’t. They can exist unobtrusively in your house. It comes in various size and style. Some types can be fixed into fireplaces or buried or mounted on the walls close to the ceiling. The ducted split systems can be concealed in the ceiling.

Is the outdoor unit big and where do you place it?
Mostly, the outdoor unit is about the size of big suitcase. The outdoor unit is usually placed in a discreet place where it is also possible to run pipe work between outdoor and indoor. We respect your budget so we work on the minimum cost possible.

Are heat pumps reliable?
Yes, they are reliable and dependable. They have the same life expectancy as the common refrigerator.

How do you operate a heat pump?
Just like an air conditioner using a remote control. It has on and off features, temperature, heat or cool mode, timer, and fan speed. It can also be programmed to turn minutes before you arrive home to ensure a warm and cosy temperature or cool place when you got home.

Does it take a long time to install a heat pump?
On average installation of a back to back system takes 4-6 hours, for more complex installation like a single split system, ducted or multi-systems it takes longer.

Is maintenance needed for heat pumps and how often?
At least every 4 weeks the indoor air filters of a heat pump needs to be cleaned. The instructions for doing this are found in the manual that goes with the unit upon installation and our technician will also advise on completed installation. A general maintenance check of the heat pump unit should be done every year to ensure optimum function.



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