Heat Pump Efficiency Terms -- What Do They Mean?

Selecting the right heat pump for your home is important if you want to experience the greatest efficiency and comfort possible. Here are four relevant heat pump efficiency terms you need to know when making your purchase selection:

  • HSPF (heating seasonal performance factor): This rating indicates how efficiently your heat pump can keep your home warm during the entire Ohio winter. It’s calculated by taking the estimated heat output divided by the amount of energy required to produce the heat. Look for an HSPF of 8 or higher for the greatest heat pump efficiency in the winter.
  • COP (coefficient of performance): You want to pay attention to the COP because it determines heat pump efficiency at a certain temperature. Divide the total energy output by the electrical energy needed to determine the COP. This term is comparable to the steady-state efficiency rating given to furnaces.
  • SEER (seasonal energy efficiency ratio): This is the cooling equivalent of HSPF. It measures how efficiently the heat pump can cool off your home throughout the summer. It can be calculated the same way as HSPF, except you take the cooling output divided by the energy consumed in the process. 14 SEER or higher will provide you with the best heat pump efficiency.
  • EER (energy efficiency ratio): Similar to SEER, this term indicates cooling efficiency. However, it is calculated by taking the cooling power of the machine at the warmest likely temperature divided by the electricity needed. By choosing a system with an EER rating of 11.7 or higher, you can rest assured that your home will stay cool even when the temperature soars outside.

You’re bound to see these heat pump efficiency terms on packaging as you shop for a system upgrade. Keep in mind that as these ratings go up, so does the initial purchase price. However, energy savings caused by increased efficiency can help pay the difference. To learn more, please contact Joe Behr Plumbing and Heating. We're glad to provide services to homeowners in the Mid-Ohio area.

Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about heat pump efficiency and other HVAC topics, visit our website.

Joe Behr Plumbing and Heating, Inc. services the Mid-Ohio area. 

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