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Air-Source Heat Pumps Q&A


| 1/6/2020 9:47:00 AM


Photo by Oak Ridge National Labs

Homeowner Peter Callaway documented his experience converting his household to a heat pump system in a region that relies predominantly on fuel oil for home heating. Here, Peter follows that two-part series with a Q & A to help others determine whether air-sourced heat pumps are the right fit for their home heating.

MOTHER EARTH NEWS: Why did you do this installation?

Peter Callaway: Because home heating and cooling, including hot-water heating, is one of the biggest sources of a family’s carbon footprint — up to 60 percent. I was burning oil and gas from November to April heating my home in New York State and using oil all year long just for hot water. From June to September, I’m running air conditioners. Heat pumps use about half the electricity for cooling that air conditioners do and a quarter the electricity that electric heaters do. So, by using a 100-percent renewable electricity supply together with heat pump-based heating and cooling, I can eliminate fossil fuel use entirely while lowering energy use costs.



What was the straw that broke the camel’s back and triggered the leap to heat pumps?



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