Cooling With Your Heat Pump

Save Money and Stay Cool

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Are you located in or near Cambridge, Ontario, and are searching for a heat pump to cool and heat your home?

If so, Service 1st is the best heat pump store Cambridge has to offer. We have everything you need and more! Learn more in the FAQs below, or contact us directly if you have any questions.

How Do Heat Pumps Cool Your Home?

Cooling your home with a heat pump involves using a heat pump system to extract heat from the indoor air and transfer it outside, thereby lowering the indoor temperature. 

Even though the term “heat pump” might imply they only provide heating, these systems are designed to provide both heating and cooling functions.

Here is how a heat pump works for cooling:
  • Heat Absorption (Indoor Unit): During the cooling process, the indoor section of the heat pump (often located inside the house) absorbs heat from the indoor air.
  • Refrigerant Circulation: The absorbed heat is transferred to a refrigerant that circulates within the indoor unit. This refrigerant has a low boiling point.
  • Compression and Heat Release (Outdoor Unit): The refrigerant is then compressed and pumped to the outdoor unit. As it’s compressed, its temperature and pressure rise significantly.
  • Heat Dissipation (Outdoor Unit): In the outdoor unit, the hot, pressurized refrigerant releases the absorbed heat to the outside air.
  • Cooling Effect: The now-cooled refrigerant returns to the indoor unit to repeat the cycle, and the process continues until the desired indoor temperature is reached.

This process is more energy-efficient than traditional heating or cooling methods, as it moves heat rather than directly generating it.

Heat pumps are particularly effective in moderate climates where the temperature doesn’t drop too low in winter. They provide both heating and cooling capabilities, making them versatile systems for maintaining indoor comfort throughout the year.

Why Not Just Use An Air Conditioner?

While heat pumps and air conditioners can both be used to cool indoor spaces, there are some key differences between the two systems.

  • Future Considerations: Air conditioning units, while effective in providing cooling solutions, may face a shift in their longevity and relevance in the coming years. Experts predict that traditional air conditioning units may become obsolete within the next 10-11 years due to the ongoing efforts to phase out refrigerants with high global warming potential. In contrast, heat pumps are much more energy efficient, eco-friendly and future-proof.
  • Heating Capability: One of the main distinctions is that a heat pump can provide both heating and cooling, while an air conditioner is designed solely for cooling. Heat pumps can reverse their operation to extract heat from the outdoor air (or the ground in the case of a ground-source or geothermal heat pump) and bring it indoors for heating during colder months.
  • Energy Efficiency: Heat pumps are generally more energy-efficient than traditional air conditioning systems because they transfer heat rather than generate it. By using the ambient heat in the outdoor air or ground, heat pumps can achieve a higher efficiency level compared to air conditioners, especially in moderate climates.
  • Year-Round Comfort: Because heat pumps offer both heating and cooling capabilities, they provide year-round comfort with a single system. In regions with moderate climates, a heat pump can efficiently handle both heating in the winter and cooling in the summer.
  • Initial Cost: In some cases, the initial cost of installing a heat pump may be higher than that of an air conditioner. However, the long-term energy savings and the ability to use a single system for both heating and cooling can make heat pumps a cost-effective choice over time.
  • Environmental Impact: Heat pumps are often considered more environmentally friendly because they utilize existing heat sources rather than relying solely on electricity to generate heat or cool air. This can result in lower greenhouse gas emissions, especially if the electricity used to power the heat pump comes from renewable sources.

While air conditioners are effective at home cooling, heat pumps offer additional benefits, including energy efficiency, year-round comfort, and environmental considerations. The choice between the two depends on factors such as climate, desired functionalities, and budget considerations.

Are Heat Pumps Also Controlled Via Thermostat?

Yes, heat pumps are typically controlled using a thermostat, similar to air conditioning (AC) units. The thermostat communicates with the heat pump system to maintain the set temperature by turning the system on or off as needed.

Here is how the thermostat works with a heat pump:
  • Temperature Setting: Set the desired temperature on the thermostat.
  • Thermostat Control: The thermostat monitors the current indoor temperature and compares it to the set temperature.
  • System Activation: If the indoor temperature deviates from the set temperature, the thermostat signals the heat pump to either start heating or cooling the space.
  • Operation of Heat Pump: The heat pump adjusts its operation based on the thermostat’s signal. For cooling, it will extract heat from the indoor air and release it outside. For heating, it will extract heat from the outdoor air or ground and bring it indoors.
  • Maintenance Temperature: The heat pump continues to operate until the indoor temperature matches the set temperature on the thermostat.

Modern thermostats often come with programmable features, allowing you to schedule temperature changes throughout the day to optimize energy efficiency. Smart thermostats may also offer remote control via smartphone apps and additional features like learning your preferences over time.

Overall, the thermostat plays a key role in controlling the operation of a heat pump, allowing you to maintain a comfortable indoor environment and manage energy usage efficiently.

Are Heat Pumps Reliable?

Yes! Heat pumps are reliable and efficient systems that can handle both cooling and heating functions. However, their longevity is not as great as having a separate AC unit and furnace. This is because AC units and Furnaces receive a break during the winter and summer months. A heat pump, on the other hand, remains in operation year-round. 

To ensure your heat pump remains reliable for years to come, consider the following.
  • Quality of Installation: Proper installation is crucial for the performance and reliability of a heat pump. A well-installed system is more likely to function efficiently and have fewer issues.
  • Regular Maintenance: Regular maintenance, such as cleaning coils, checking refrigerant levels, and inspecting components, is essential for keeping a heat pump in good working condition. Neglecting maintenance can lead to decreased efficiency and potential problems.
  • Proper Sizing: A heat pump should be appropriately sized for the specific needs of the home. An oversized or undersized system can lead to performance issues and reduce overall reliability.
  • Climate Considerations: The efficiency of an air-source heat pump can be affected by extreme temperatures, especially in very cold climates. 

Most heat pump systems have an auxiliary electric heater added to the indoor air unit to provide supplemental heat when outdoor temperatures drop. However because electric auxiliary heating Is not very efficient, the addition of a furnace can be a solution to this problem, creating a system that relies on the heat pump as the primary heat source but automatically switches to the furnace when appropriate.

Contact us today to ensure your heat pump remains reliable for years to come! 

Contact The Experts At Service 1st!

Silas Roger Barrette
Brandon Karl Heuser

If you are exploring different types of cooling and heating solutions, contact us directly. You can rely on our experience and expertise at Service 1st. 

We have been serving homeowners in Cambridge and the surrounding areas for over 30 years and have a proven record of excellence. Whether it’s time for a simple service call or a new heat pump install, we can help.

We are a locally owned and operated business that prides itself on the highest quality work and installation of the highest quality products. We have received the prestigious Circle of Champions award from Bryant – an honour that highlights our commitment to quality, leadership, and excellence in the HVAC industry. We are an Elite Bryant Factory Authorized Dealer and offer our customers the highest quality products and services.

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What Our Customers Are Saying...


Great company! They helped us replacing our old furnace and also install a heat pump for further improve the energy efficiency of our heating and cooling system.”

Enrico, P. 

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