Does it cost more to keep your heat pump on all the time? Is it more efficient to turn it off when you are not using it? Or does switching it on and off all the time costs more?
According to Stuff News its the great debate!
Some people swear by leaving their heat pump running all the time, others turn them off when no-one’s around – surely it’s time to settle the debate once and for all.
Damien McGill, an engineer by trade and member of the Superhome Movement, says it’s no more expensive to run heat pumps full-time, and that doing so has health benefits, for humans, and for the building.
McGill has been monitoring three adjacent units he owns in central Christchurch. He lives in one himself and has not found any significant difference in his power bill from leaving the heat pump running 24/7 set at a constant 18 degrees Celsius.
“If you’ve already got it at 18, it doesn’t use much energy to heat to 20 or 21 degrees. If it gets down to 12 or 14 degrees then the heat pump has to work hard out to get it back up,” he says.
However, every case is slightly different.
So Stuff called in the experts: Scientist Andrew Pollard, from building research organisation BRANZ, and Gareth Gretton, from government agency EECA, the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority.
We’ll let you read the full article here, but some points to note.
To some degree, it depends on how well your home is insulated. If your home has great insulation and double glazing, using a heat pump 24/7 won’t cost much more.
But if your home loses heat easily, its going to cost a lot to heat however you do it.
Keep Children Warm
You do want to make sure that all bedrooms are at least 18 degrees, as recommended by the World Health Organisation.
“if people are home during the day with children, working from home, or for any reason, keep the heat pump running for comfort”
Using a Timer
EECA’s advice is to run the heat pump when people are home, and to use a timer.
Using a timer means that your home will already be warm when you wake up or when you come home. This makes it less likely that you will turn it on to full in the belief that this will heat it quicker. It doesn’t it just uses more energy.
Gretton is a big believer in opening the windows before you leave for work, so that fresh air can circulate and keep your home healthy.
Finally, Pollard agreed that relative humidity was also important to control: People should aim for humidity between 40 and 60 per cent.
“A lot of homes will average about 70 per cent: That’s where the mould starts to grow,” he says. “It’s invisible before it becomes visible. It can hide behind surfaces, so often behind wallpaper rather than on the surface.”
Ask Cool Air
If you are interested in a heat pump, it is incredibly important to choose an installer that will do the job well.
Our Quality Guarantee
We guarantee the quality of our installation by offering we offer a 12 month warranty on all Cool Air workmanship, parts and labour. So if your system has a fault, service is on us.
Wherever you are in South Canterbury we’ll help you stay warm in winter and cool in summer. We service the entire South Canterbury region – Ashburton, Geraldine, Timaru, Waimate, Oamaru, Fairlie through to Twizel and the Waitaki District.
Call us on 03 684 8034 if you would like a quote.