It’s no surprise that Western New York receives its fair share of cold weather. For many, cold climate heat pumps are a great option for cost-effective comfort in homes and businesses alike. Cold Climate Heat Pumps have been known to reduce energy consumption by upwards of 40% when compared to more traditional methods such as baseboard heating and fuel oil.
The main function of a heat pump is to move heat from one area to another. Heat pumps are different from furnaces in that they do not burn fuel to create heat. Heat pumps generate and extract their own heat. In the winter, they take heat from the outside air and transfer it to the indoor air, which is then circulated through your home. In summer, the process is reversed and your heat pump removes heat from your indoor air and sends it outside. This keeps the inside cool.
How It Works
The main function of a heat pump is to move heat from one area to another. Using relatively little energy and burning far less fossil fuel than traditional alternatives, heat pumps capture, generate and extract their own heat.
Unlike geothermal heat pumps, cold climate heat pumps are installed above the ground. They’re relatively inexpensive, can be used year-round and result in savings on your utility bill immediately after installation because they don’t rely on fossil fuel to manage the interior temperature of your home.
When you choose a cold climate heat pump, a heat exchanger is installed outside your home. To heat your home during the winter, low-temperature heat is pulled across this exchanger and moved to a refrigerant. It is then transferred indoors by way of a compressor, where the volume of the refrigerant shrinks, creating the heat that circulates throughout your home and keeps you and your family warm.
During the summer, this process is reversed. The heat pump pulls hot air from your home and dispels it outside, effectively cooling your space and combatting any unpleasant mugginess.
Cold climate heat pumps have been dismissed by some in the past due to the misconception that they function less efficiently in extremely cold temperature. At Capital Heat, we install only the latest, most-cutting edge technology. Our cold climate heat pumps won’t lose efficiency when the temperatures drop below freezing. That means even in extremely cold weather, a cold climate heat pump is one of the most economical and environmentally friendly home heating and cooling choices you can make.
Design & Maintenance
The Capital Advantage
A Scientific Approach
At Capital Heat, we focus on the science of cold climate heating and cooling, which means everything we do is methodical and evidence-based. All systems are installed in consultation with our team of certified mechanical engineers who have over 20 years of experience in thermodynamics.
Experience, Expertise, Precision
Capital Heat has over 50 years of experience in sizing and designing heating and cooling systems. Our expertise in building science allows us to identify your exact heating and cooling loads and suggest ways to reduce them overall. Any suggestion we make has your exact, unique specifications in mind and emphasizes efficiency, sustainability and cost-effectiveness.
Industry Leaders and Innovators
We stay ahead of the curve on all the latest heating and cooling technology so we can deliver contemporary solutions to our customers. As forward-thinking contractors and engineers, we’re passionate about finding the most sustainable, environmentally responsible heating and cooling alternatives.
Partners in Your Lifelong Heating and Cooling Needs
We have been family-owned and -operated since 1957. We stand by our work, we’re collaborative and honest, and we treat our customers like family, too. We’re invested in each and every system we design and install, because we want it to serve you efficiently for as long as possible. We don’t work on commission, so we’re not going to sell you something you need just to make an extra buck selling you something you don’t need. We’re partners, not salespeople.
Regular Maintenance Ensures Lasting Efficiency
Maintaining optimal performance of your heat pump is essential because it’s designed to function year-round, and there are a handful of small things you can do on a regular basis to keep it humming along without issue.
- Check the air filters on a monthly basis and clean or replace any that appear dirty.
- Keep the area around your heat pump clear of any snow, ice, foliage or shrubbery. It’s recommended that you maintain at least 18 inches of space between your heat pump and any plants or greenery for optimal air flow.
- Make sure the outdoor coils are clean. If you need to spiff them up, for best results turn off the unit, use a heavy degreaser and rinse them down with a hose.
We also recommend that you have your heat pump maintained by a professional at Capital Heat once a year. During the check-up, we’ll change old filters and complete any seasonal prep. If needed, we’ll also adjust your unit and get it running at optimum capacity.
The best way to stay on top of regular maintenance is to enroll in a Capital Heat maintenance program. In addition to a number of valuable perks and savings, we’ll also remind you when your system is due for a check-up, so you don’t have to worry about it. We offer three different tiers of coverage—learn more about each option and choose the one that best suits your needs here.
Benefits of a Cold Climate Heat Pump
One of the main benefits of installing a cold climate heat pump is the ability to break your cycle of dependency on fossil fuel. Because they don’t need to burn fossil fuel to function, they’re more efficient and more cost effective than traditional alternatives.
The savings you’ll see on your utility bill as a result is no small victory, but the biggest benefit is the individual effort you can make to reverse the impact of global climate change. Installing a heat pump is one of the few meaningful ways you can reduce your carbon footprint and combat the challenges posed by an over dependence on fossil fuel.
Though we see this as the most rewarding aspect of installing a heat pump, there are a few others worth noting:
- Environmental Impact—The EPA and the U.S. Department of Energy recognize heat pumps as one of the most environmentally friendly ways to heat and cool a home. Unlike other comfort systems, they won’t emit carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide or other greenhouse gasses which contribute to air quality pollution and climate change.
- Clean and Safe—Traditional furnaces use a combustion process to heat your home, which increases the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning and puts your family’s safety in danger. There’s no combustion with a cold climate heat pump, making it safer choice for you and your family.
- Lower Operating Cost—Cold climate heat pumps are more efficient at generating and transferring heat using just a small amount of electricity. That means you’ll pay less for greater heating and cooling capabilities.
- Quiet and Reliable—Compared to alternatives, cold climate heat pumps are quiet. Heat pumps also tend to have longer lifespans than traditional furnaces and air conditioners and generally require less effort to maintain, especially if you schedule yearly check-ups to ensure everything is running smoothly.
- Cost effectiveness meets sustainability—Cold climate heat systems are a smart investment. Not only are they relatively inexpensive to install, they’ll continue to produce energy savings over time.
Rebates & Savings
Cold Climate Heat Pump Rebates and Loans
Heat pumps are a smart investment because of the savings you’ll accrue over time, but there are also a few things you can do to offset initial installation costs as well.
The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) offers incentives of $500 per an installed program-qualified air source heat pump system. They’re available on a first-come, first-serve basis, so be sure to apple before they run out. As a NYSERDA-approved contractor, Capital Heat will handle the rebate process and pass the savings on to you.
As of April 2019, NYSERDA is also offering $1,000 per thermal ton when you make a cold climate heat pump your home’s main heating source.
National Grid Rebates for Air Source Heat Pumps
The National Grid offers rebates that vary depending on the efficiency of your heat pump, which is evaluated as its Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER). The higher the SEER, the more money you’re eligible to receive:
- $200 per thermal ton for a cold-climate air-source heat pump with a SEER of greater than or equal to 18
- $350 per thermal ton for a cold-climate air-source heat pump with a SEER of greater than or equal to 20
NYSERDA Smart Energy Loans
To help you manage the cost of installing a new heat pump, NYSERDA also offers special, income-dependent financing options. The Smart Energy Loan (SEL) is a traditional loan that you repay monthly via check or automatic payment.
- Interest rates are subject to change and availability is subject to the customer’s credit qualification
- Monthly payments made to NYSERDA’s loan servicer
- Loan amounts from $1,500 to $25,000 with loan terms of five, 10 or 15 years.