Heat Pump Fact Sheet
An air-source heat pump is an extremely efficient all-in-one heating and cooling unit. It uses a small amount of electricity to transfer heat from one location to another. To heat your home, it draws heat from the air outside (even in cold outdoor temperatures) and brings it inside. To cool your home, it draws heat from inside and discharges it outside. These systems can reduce your utility bills by 30% - 40%, or even eliminate them entirely, if combined with solar panels.
Air-source heat pumps use significantly less electricity than traditional air conditioners and can completely replace them. Heat pumps are capable of providing 100% of a home’s heat as well; newer “cold climate” heat pumps can provide heat even when outdoor temperatures are zero degrees Fahrenheit. However, combining them with an existing oil or gas heating system is also an option, to reduce heating costs and fossil fuel consumption. An integrated control on a hybrid system enables you to minimize use of the existing system and maximize use of the heat pump in order to get the most savings and comfort.
Heat pumps can utilize existing air ducts in your home, but ductless “mini splits” are available for houses that have no existing ductwork, making good retrofit add-ons. These small and flexible systems consist of an outdoor unit (heat pump) connected to from one to four indoor air-handler units (mini splits), one indoor unit for each room or zone.
For more information, including on financial incentives:
This Old House Magazine's article, "Read This Before You Buy Ductless AC"
Note that because Marblehead’s electricity provider is Marblehead Municipal Light Department, not National Grid, Marblehead residents do NOT qualify for Mass Save Rebates. Only Marblehead residents with gas home heating systems, not gas appliances, qualify for Mass Save Home Energy Assessments.
Also note that Marblehead Municipal Light Department has not joined the Mass Renewable Energy Trust, so individual Marblehead residents do not qualify for any Mass Clean Energy Center (Mass CEC) incentives. Therefore, when linking to the Mass CEC site, residents should only use it as a way to find installers, not rebates.
In the future, if Town of Marblehead applies for and enters the “Heat Smart Program”, residents applying through the Heat Smart program would qualify for reduced cost of installation of heat pumps, but not Mass CEC rebates.
For a list of homeowners who have already installed air-source heat pumps and are happy to share their experience, click here.