For newcomers in the HVAC industry, the terms used to describe heating and cooling technologies can feel like a jumble of acronyms, all describing the same principle with slight variations.
My vacation to Costa Rica last week was a brilliant reminder of two things. One, Costa Rica is very hot, even in February. And two, air source heat pumps are incredibly effective at what they’re designed to do. Truly, the difference between being indoors versus outdoors during the Costa Rican dry season was night and day. The Airbnb my partner and I rented in Tamarindo, a little beach town on the northwestern coast, was equipped with two state-of-the-art heat pump units that kept us comfortable all hours of the day.
Last fall, just as the weather started to turn, my old AC condenser met its death. It was a sad time – not because I needed to worry about cooling my house, but because all I saw was a future filled with dollar signs and stress.
Thankfully, I work at NEEP, and know all about the benefits of heat pumps. An air source heat pump (ASHP) seemed like the logical, no-brainer next step. Turns out, this next step was going to be quite an educational experience.
Here are five key things I learned about ASHPs as I navigated the market as a consumer:
As glaciers and ice sheets melt, sea levels rise, and several species like the white rhinoceros are decimated down to their last, I have been reading about Greta Thunberg and her fight to save our future planet. Her passion at times can be both awe-inspiring and guilt-inducing, but her impact is undoubtedly sobering.
Taking the first step to replace your home’s heating and cooling system can be overwhelming. For one, it’s your home – no one wants to feel uncomfortable in their living space and it can be a scary thought to make a wrong decision. For two, no two homes are exactly the same – there are many factors that leave consumers confused when deliberating the “right” type of heating system for them, especially when it comes to heat pump technology. They ask multifaceted questions, like “How do I know if I’m a good candidate for a complete system replacement?
There is no denying that the impacts of global warming have created a sense of urgency to accelerate decarbonization efforts in all sectors – from transport and electricity generation to building and industry.
In my last blog, The State of Strategic Energy Management in the Northeast, I gave an overview of NEEP’s efforts to assist with the adoption of Strategic Energy Management (SEM) in the commercial, industrial and municipal sectors in the Northeast.
Last month in Woburn, Massachusetts, 135 air source heat pump (ASHP) stakeholders gathered to discuss market transformation strategies for ASHPs. NEEP has been hosting this annual in-person workshop since 2014 and this represented our largest event yet. The workshop is a critical opportunity for regional stakeholders to focus on collaborating towards market transformation.
Do you remember where you were on June 2, 2014?
Some of you may have been in Newport, Rhode Island at NEEP’s first in-person Air Source Heat Pump (ASHP) Market Transformation Workshop: Air Source Heat Pump Workshop – Warming Up the Market. Months before the workshop, NEEP had published a market transformation strategies report that had established a roadmap for regional stakeholder collaboration towards market development of ASHPs.
In January of 2015, NEEP launched a new program to more effectively differentiate air source heat pumps (ASHP) capable of high performance in cold-climate applications. A new specification had to be developed and manufacturers were invited to provide the necessary information to have their products included on the list NEEP creatively dubbed the Cold Climate ASHP Product List. NEEP has maintained and housed the list of products in an excel spreadsheet for download on our website ever since.