Air source heat pumps have become an increasingly popular form of renewable heating in modern households. There are two key varieties of air source heat pump available on the market: air-to-air and air-to-water. But how do these heat pumps vary? And which is the most efficient and cost-effective option?
Air-to-water heat pumps
Air-to-water heat pumps are a popular choice with anyone who has been enticed towards installing a renewable heating system by the Renewable Heating Incentive. Air-to-water heat pumps installations are almost always eligible for government support through the RHI and Renewable Heat Premium Payments, which can make installing them much easier financially.
Air-to-water heat pumps are versatile systems which are able to deliver heat around your home in a number of ways, including through your radiators, underfloor heating and fan convectors. Because of the way in which they work, they are also effective in delivering hot water for use around the home through taps, showers etc.
Installing an air-to-water heat pump system can be a little more complex than an air-to-air system. Installing the system requires an individual water distribution system to be built which can be both costly and time consuming. It is, however, an essential if water is to be heated effectively and delivered to where it is needed in the home.
Air-to-air heat pumps
Air-to-air heat pumps are usually said to be a little more efficient at heating the home, by running at lower heat emission temperatures and therefore wasting less heat. Because the heat they generate is airborne, they are also quicker at distributing heat and warming up a room, usually through the use of heat vents.
These heat pump systems are, however, are less able to heat water for use around the home for washing, showering etc, meaning that another water heating system will need to be used. Because it is more difficult to measure the levels of heat they generate, they aren’t eligible for payments under the RHI or RHPP government schemes, which makes them a less popular choice with those relying on government support to make their installation financially viable.
When it comes to performance, both systems are highly effective in heating your home efficiently, saving energy and keeping costs low. However, the RHI and RHPP can offer a great deal of financial support and tend to be a big deciding factor in choosing a heat pump system. Therefore, if cost is a concern, choosing an air-to-water heat pump is usually the best option.
Image sourced: Kristoferbtagsair source heat pumpair-to-airair-to-water