heatpumpHeat Pumps

Heat pumps operate from air temperature rather than direct sun and use the same principle as an air conditioner. So there are some situations when they are ideal such as heavily shaded locations where solar will struggle. Also there are some locations where the electric hot water system is not on Off Peak rates and hence very expensive to run and the heat pump will save energy and money. If however, you have plenty of sunshine and a suitable site a standard solar hot water system will provide better savings.

Heat pumps are available in models where the tank and evaporator are separated and also where they are integrated into a single unit. Like all systems, heat pumps have their advantages and disadvantages.

Reasonably cheap to supply and install compared to a normal solar hot water system
Will typically save 70% of the energy use of a similar sized electric hot water system
Will suit locations where shading is high and solar will not be feasible
Will save money on hot water if Off Peak rates are unavailable and paying full tariff rates
Can operate day or night and under all weather conditions except freezing temperatures

Three trades may be involved in servicing; electrician, plumber or refrigeration mechanic
Can potentially be noisy like an air conditioner, so restrict hours of operation.
Requires power connection to operate
No real dollar saving if comparison is a similar size of electric hot water system run on cheaper Off Peak rates


QUALITY ISSUES: There are 2 main quality issues associated with heat pumps.

First is the tank construction. We only supply stainless steel tanks which provide long life, have long warranties and low maintenance (anode replacements are not required). The cheaper glass-lined systems have less life, less warranty, and require periodic anode replacements as a required service.

The other issue to be careful about when choosing a heat pump is it’s performance when temperatures are low. The better quality systems will perform in temperature close to freezing whilst the cheaper and poorer quality units will stop working well above freezing temperatures. This is important if you are to have good performance and hence plenty of hot water during cold winter snaps.

For more advice or more questions answered, don't hesitate to contact us!