If you’re in the market for a new heat pump, there are a few industry terms and features that you should become familiar with to help you make the best decision for your specific needs.
SEER and HSPF
Look for the heat pump’s heating and cooling efficiency ratings on the EnergyGuide label. The ratings are designated as SEER, or seasonal energy efficiency ratio, for cooling efficiency, and HSPF, or heating season performance factor, for heating efficiency. The SEER and HSPF values help you calculate lifetime operating costs between models to get the most value for your investment dollar.
- SEER: SEER is calculated by dividing total cooling energy expended (or cooling provided) during the cooling season by the total energy consumed in watt hours by the heat pump system. High-efficiency heat pumps provide better than SEER 19 for substantial energy savings. The higher the SEER, the more efficient the system.
- HSPF: While cooling efficiency is important for home comfort and energy savings, the northeast Ohio area averages about four months of minimum temperatures below freezing. Therefore, you may choose to place greater need for a higher HSPF, such as HSPF 10, when narrowing down your choices.
The following advanced features produce less wear, save energy and last years longer than their standard counterparts.
- Scroll compressors pump refrigerant more efficiently and provide as much as 15 degrees warmer temperatures for the same energy consumed than standard compressors.
- Two-speed compressors pump the precise amount of refrigerant needed for current, real-time heating and cooling needs.
- Variable-speed fan motors adjust velocity to real-time need, as opposed to operating at 100 percent capacity for 100 percent of the time the system is on. Slower air speed aids in dehumidifying for greater comfort.
High-efficiency systems and advanced features cost more initially, but the higher investment may be recouped by energy savings many times over during the system’s lifespan.
If you’re considering a heat pump for your home, contact the experts at Stack Heating & Cooling. We’ve helped northeast Ohio homeowners choose the best HVAC equipment since 1976.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about heat pumps and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.