A heat pump is not only an ecological but also an energy-efficient heating device. Thanks to renewable energy sources it is much more efficient than traditional boilers or furnances. Many investors are discouraged by the rather high cost of its installation, but it should be remembered that a heat pump provides major savings. Find out how much electricity it uses and how much you can gain thanks to it.
How does a heat pump work?
In the beginning, it is worth explaining why a heat pump is the most energy-efficient heating device. It works in a similar way to a refrigerator but in the opposite way. Through a heat exchanger, it extracts natural heat energy from the environment and transfers it to the building’s heating system. The so-called bottom source (from which heat is extracted) can be air, ground, or water. Modern heat pumps are very efficient and work even at sub-zero temperatures outside. This makes it possible to save a lot of heat energy. They only need a small amount of electrical energy to work. How much electricity do they use and with what efficiency do they produce heat? It depends on the type and individual parameters of the device.
COP and SCOP – heat pump efficiency
Heat pumps are characterized by high energy efficiency. This is indicated by the COP and SCOP coefficients. COP expresses the ratio of the amount of heat energy supplied to the amount of electricity consumed at a given time. This means that with 1 kWh of electricity a heat pump delivers between 3.5 and 5.5 kWh of heat energy. The higher the COP, the less energy the pump will use to deliver a given amount of heat. This means that from 1 kWh of electricity a heat pump delivers between 3.5 and 5.5 kWh of heat energy. The higher the COP, the less energy the pump will use to deliver a given amount of heat.
Checking the COP is the easiest way to compare the parameters of different heat pumps. However, it is not enough to determine how much it will cost to heat a building (for example a house) with them. This requires knowledge of the SCOP value, which tells you the average annual efficiency of the heat pump. It allows you to determine the specific amount of heat energy delivered to the building relative to the electricity consumed on an annual basis. The value of this coefficient can be estimated with the help of online calculators. It depends, among other things, on the desired room temperature, how the heat from the pump is used, and the heat source.
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