How Air Source Heat Pumps Work

Air Source Heat Pumps are fitted to the outside of your home or business premises, preferably in an area with a good circulation of air. Whilst they range in size, most are about the dimensions of a large air-conditioning unit. There are two main varieties, although how they operate is principally the same.

Air-Water Systems

The air-water model is the most widely fitted system.  The heat extracted from the outside air is boosted to a higher temperature and then used to heat water in a tank. This water is then used to run a conventional central heating system either based on radiators or underfloor heating.

Air-Air Systems

In an air-air system the heat extracted from the outside air is boosted to the appropriate temperature by the compressor in the heat pump and then fed directly into the house. This system can only be used to supply space heating to your home. And is used by Caplor for air conditioning systems.

How the process works

The steps below outline the key parts of the process for an air-water system. The same process applies for an air-air system, except that after step two a fan blows air over the high temperature pipes which heats the room:

  1. A special anti-freeze solution is cycled through a pipe system, which collects heat from the outside as air is drawn over it by a fan
  2. A compressor then boosts the temperature of the solution to the required level, depending on your heating system
  3. The high temperature solution is run through sealed pipes contained in a water tank, which heats the water ready for use
  4. The heated water from the tank is circulated through your central heating system to heat your home or business premises
  5. The cooled solution flows back around the system where, again, it collects heat from the outside air.

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