Heat pump cost 2-4 times lesser of energy to heat than non-heat pump heater, then why are non-heat pump heater still very common ?

(1) At home, boiler and water radiator is used.

(2) For district heating, central boiler is used.

Why aren't most these replace by heat pump?

For (2) the reason may be there is not enough heat source to pump from to support megawatts of power output.

Possible reasons for home: heat pump is driven by electricity and boiler cost lesser then electricity, then the cost difference is not that much.

I also heard in cold winter air conditioner won't work well as heat pump, is this true and is this a possible reason?


The last one is the reason furnaces are still nearly universal where temps drop down to below freezing. People will run an air source heat pump usually down to an outside temp of 40 F, at which point they become very inefficient and require a defrost cycle. Below that, the furnace has the needed capacity and operates cheaply. Water or ground source heat pumps can run in colder weather, but there is about a three month time lag on ground temperature vs air temperature, so even these need a short winter to be viable on there own, else they run terribly in the spring.

| improve this answer | |
  • $\begingroup$ en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_source_heat_pumps, it says air heat pump work well for <0C $\endgroup$ – jw_ Apr 23 at 9:01
  • $\begingroup$ @jw_ yes, at a cop way below 3 or 4, like under 2 which means they are not being very efficient. As I live at over 1000m above sea level in the Alps and work with people who install heating systems of all types I can promise you that they tend to avoid installing air based heat pumps above 1000m, however, heat pumps that are ground source are often used as the temperature below ground (deeper than 2m) is around 5 to 8 degrees C all year round. $\endgroup$ – Solar Mike Apr 23 at 9:58
  • $\begingroup$ Yes pvhvac.com/blog/heres-the-truth-about-dual-fuel-heating, really nice article, make everything clear $\endgroup$ – jw_ Apr 30 at 13:02

In most cases, heat pumps are used for heating, at least where I am. They take low grade heat from the atmosphere or underground and use that to heat dwellings. Some are reversible to cool buildings in the summer.

Why aren't they more common? well that depends on many factors: what is there already, what the owner is prepared to pay, how much time is available for replacement if the old unit has failed etc etc

I installed a « puit canadienne » for the incoming ventilation air and as the ground temperature is relatively constant at a 2 metre depth (approx a 3 or 4 degree C change yearly, compared to a 30 degree change for the surface) this help moderate the incoming air both summmer and winter.

| improve this answer | |

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.