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09/09/15 What is a heat pump and can it save you money?

Could your business benefit from heat pumps?

If you haven't heard of an air source heat pump yet then you could be missing a money-saving trick.

For those reading who don't know how a heat pump works, picture a fridge. Refrigerant gases are used to cool down the inside while heat is given off at the back of the fridge. A heat pump works in a similar fashion by taking heat from the air, increasing its temperature and then pumping it round the room. It can also be reversed so that it cools rooms in the warm summer months.

A heat pump has many advantages over a traditional central heating "wet" system, the first of which is that it is room specific, i.e. it only heats up the room it is in. So if you have a little-used meeting room, a heat pump would be a good choice as it won't be heated up needlessly just because the rest of the building needs to be warm. It also heats up (or cools down) rooms instantly whereas a wet system needs time to take the chill off a room, and is clearly a bit useless at cooling down a room. And, of course, there is no need to worry about having to bleed the radiators throughout the winter.

The cost saving makes heat pumps a strong contender for many businesses, as Peter Townsend, Project Manager at TSS Facilities explains: "If you have a 3kW electric heater standing in the corner, you pay for 3kW and that's exactly what you get out of it, 3kW. It's hard to predict exactly how much a heat pump will cost to run because it depends on the ambient outdoor and indoor temperatures, but if you have a 3kW heat pump then you are probably only going to pay for 1kW because of the latent heat in the gases. Long term it definitely works out cheaper than a wet system."

Most systems also include a setback, which allows the system to perform at a certain rate throughout the day before dropping by a few degrees at night. "People can be both comfortable and energy efficient," reassures Peter.

The installation must be done by an FGAS-registered engineer (all of the engineers at TSS Facilities are FGAS-registered) and the company must be REFCOM-approved as well. "It's all about the safe handling of refrigerant gases, which are dangerous to both the Ozone layer and people if not handled correctly," says Peter.

A proper assessment of your heating and cooling needs could dramatically increase the efficiency of your system as well as saving you money. Talk to TSS today for a free, no obligation quote on 01273 719111, or visit

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