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How does a Heat Pump Work?

View of an outdoor heating system

Knowing how your heat pump works can be very useful. If you familiarize yourself with its working components, you may be able to identify potential problems that occur in the future. At Kingston Home Heating, we offer heat pump installation and repair services to those in the Kingston area. Our team of trained professionals are committed to providing quality service to our customers. Keep reading for a detailed description of how your heat pump—and all of its parts—works.


How It Works: The Basics

Heat pumps are home climate systems that have the ability to both heat and cool your home. Let’s take a look at how it accomplishes each of these tasks.


  • Cooling mode. When your heat pump is set to its cooling mode, heat from inside your house is pulled through your ducts by a motorized fan. It then passes through an evaporator coil. A compressor moves the refrigerant through the coil to absorb the heat and in turn, the cool air passes through the indoor ducts and into your home.

  • Heating mode. When a heat pump is set to its heating mode, it does the exact opposite. It might be hard to imagine how you can warm up your house using cold air, but it’s actually a simple process. Even though it’s cold outside, there’s enough heat that can be extracted and dispersed throughout your house through a system of vents that connects to each room.


The Components of a Heat Pump

Let’s take a look at each different component and what they do for your pump:

  • Refrigerant. Refrigerant is the substance that flows continuously through the compressor, condenser and expansion valve. It’s used to displace heat from one area to another. 

  • Compressor. The compressor is used to pressurize and thereby increase the temperature of the refrigerant, and then release it in a gaseous state to the next part of the refrigeration cycle. 

  • Condenser. The condenser is made up of copper or aluminum coils. When it’s in the heating mode, it moves heat into the home. There’s a fan behind the condenser coil, which blows air over it and into the home to be heated.

  • Expansion valve. The expansion valve is used to reduce the pressure of the refrigerant.


GreenON Rebates for Heat Pumps

The Green Ontario Fund recognizes that using heat pumps is a clean way to cool and heat homes. Ontario homeowners (those who live in a detached home, semi-detached home or townhouse) who are currently using heating oil, electricity or propane to heat their homes are eligible for a rebate if they choose to install a heat pump. You can receive up to $5,800 to install a heat pump in your home.


If you’re looking for heat pump installation in the Kingston area, give us a call at Kingston Home Heating. Our team of trained professionals will answer any question regarding your heating and cooling needs.


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