How Much Does a Cold Climate Heat Pump Cost?
Heat pumps provide both energy-efficient heating and cooling and are becoming progressively attractive among many homeowners across the country. Much more economical than classic electric heaters and air conditioners, they save homeowners hundreds of dollars a year. According to the US Department of Energy (DOE), a heat pump system can generate 1.5-3 times more electrical energy than it consumes during application.
Energy use is a major issue among homeowners. Especially in 2020, people are looking for different and creative ways to save energy. Heating and cooling are currently the largest energy consumption for US homeowners. Most US people live in fields that experience particularly cold winters and hot summers.
For these residents, classic energy sources are propane gas, electricity, or fossil fuel. Natural gas is also not available to many residents. This usually means that you rely on one of the other fuel sources mentioned above to heat and cool your home to an appropriate level. These fuel sources can be very costly. If US homeowners want to reduce their heating and cooling costs without sacrificing comfort during periods of extreme heat or cold, they demand another cheaper option. This is where heat pumps for cold climates come into play.
What is a cold climate heat pump and how does it work?
As the term suggests, a cold climate heat pump is a category of heat pump that is developed to work in extreme cold. Ordinary heat pumps allow the redistribution of heat from the air, water, sun, or ground to your home as required. It has the advantage of energy saving as it does not generate heat.
One is enough for both cooling and heating needs. Cold climate heat pumps perform similarly but are more efficient in extreme cold. Conventional heat pumps lose a significant portion of their heat output when it gets cold. Experts recommend not to use it when the temperature drops below -10 degrees Celsius. Cold climate heat pumps can draw heat from the outside surroundings even at temperatures as low as -25 degrees Celsius and some -30 degrees Celsius. Apart from this point, it differs from regular heat pumps in the following aspects:
- They are equipped with variable displacement compressors for excellent efficiency.
- They have higher ratings and require a minimum heating seasonal power factor (HSPF) of 10 or higher.
How can heat pumps for cold climates save money?
Cold climate heat pumps act as both heating and cooling appliances, eliminating the need to implement separate systems for heating and cooling.
The general home can save 30% to 50% on monthly utility bills by converting from an air conditioner to a cold climate heat pump. Installing a cold climate heat pump can charge anywhere from $3,900 to $7,000, but the monthly savings on the basic investment pay for itself quickly. You can also get discounts on cold climate heat pumps worth up to $400 in some states. A considerable feature of installing a heat pump in cold climates is that it does not require ducting or other complicated plumbing materials, so installation can take at most a day.
Cold-climate heat pumps perform best in certain houses
Not all categories of homes and buildings are positioned to achieve the best cost savings from cold climate heat pumps. Open floor plans and small businesses and homes are most possible to achieve great energy savings from using them. Building energy efficiency also plays an important role. Insulation defects and air barrier leaks, like other types of air conditioning systems, reduce the effectiveness of cold-climate heat pumps.
Overall, investing in a cold climate heat pump can be a very wise investment depending on your household and energy setup. If you live in a field of the US without natural gas and have a small house or a building envelope with a well-insulated open floor plan, you can predict incredible savings in the long run. The initial investment can often reach $5,000 or more, but the low power consumption of heat pumps in cold climates combined with the 2-in-1 heating and cooling capacity pays off fairly quickly .
And if you already have a separate heating or cooling system, you can expect significant savings on your monthly and annual utility bills. For example, a woodstove or another alternative heating or cooling system. These generally work outstanding by having another alternate system in place for days when the central system is unavailable, not only saving money but also providing much higher levels of comfort, air quality, and humidity control.
How much does a cold climate heat pump cost?
The cost of a cold climate heat pump system is determined by many factors that are difficult to calculate the average amount. However, most homeowners consume between $2,500 and $15,000, though some may spend more in certain circumstances. Some of these factors are:
- Regional local labor costs; rural fields tend to have lower labor costs, resulting in lower installation costs.
- Whether ducting needs to be installed or replaced
- Heat pump brand
- The size of your house and the size of your cooling space
- Unit price and additional materials required
- HVAC permits and installation costs in the area
- Also when to install
The type of device also affects the price of a cold climate heat pump. For cold climates, ground-source heat pumps and air source heat pumps are the two main options. Air source heat pumps are available with a central duct system or a mini-split system (ductless). A duct system is similar to a central air conditioner, so it’s perfect if you’re currently using a duct system.
Each air conditioner that we plan to install in each room will cost between $3,625 and $5,200. The total is often between $10,500 and $18,975. The mini-split (no duct) system is ideal for homes without ducts and saves additional installation costs. From $1,800 to $7,542, it’s pretty affordable. However, since there may be multiple zones in the house that need heating, one device is rarely used. If you have four or more, the cost can simply climb to $10,000.
Key Factors Affecting Cold Region Heat Pump Cost
Equipment quality and brand:
The quality and brand of the instrument will influence the price of the unit. Generally, there are budget units, standard units, and premium units. Quality ranges from utility and build quality to brand reputation and the features that come with each device.
The efficiency and performance of the unit also influence the price. They look at basic, better, and highest performance levels. Efficiency relies on two key metrics: the Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating (SEER) and the Heating Seasonal Performance Factor (HSPF). SEER ratings of 15-17 are about average, but the most efficient units have ratings above 20. An HSPF rating of 13 or higher is the exception, but the average is 8-11. The higher the performance and efficiency, the higher the expenditure of the unit.
Heat pump system size:
Regardless of the category of heat pump you choose, if you need to cover a large area or multiple rooms, your system will be larger in size and more expensive. Smaller units cost less and cover smaller areas.
The more difficult the installation case, the higher the comprehensive cost. In this regard, a ductless system can cost more, especially if the work is on the second or third floor. Easily accessible locations, such as through attics or crawl spaces, simplify installation and lower overall costs. Centralized systems often have a simple installation process once the plumbing is in place and no adjustments are required. If the installation is required, the cost will be higher.
Upgrades, extras, and other services:
Installation costs can also increase if you need to use other services, such as the removal and disposal of existing equipment. Adding things like installing an air filtration system, a humidifier, or a smart thermostat will incur additional installation costs.
Are Cold Air Heat Pumps Worth It?
Now that you know the cost of a cold climate heat pump, the next inquiry is whether it’s a worthwhile expenditure. Several economic, environmental, and practical aspects make them the perfect long-term investments. These additional benefits are:
Enjoy rebates and tax relief:
The US federal government and various states have motivation programs to encourage a rapid transition to greener, more energy-efficient systems. For example, the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 grants users of geothermal heat pumps in construction projects that begin construction by the end of 2022 a tax credit of up to 26% of total installed costs. Air source heat pumps have tax credits but at a lower tax rate. Rebates, subsidies, and tax breaks can cover more than half of installation costs.
Different states have distinct discounts and other motivations. For example, New York has subsidies of up to $11,500 for geothermal heating systems and up to $7,500 per household for air-source heat pumps for cold climates. There are also rebates up to $1,500 per 10,000 BTUH, depending on the system category and heater rating. In states such as South Dakota and Minnesota, Ductless CCHP is discounted as much as $500 per tonne depending on product specifications. Again, in the same state, homeowners can get up to $700 per tonne on a ducted CCHP system, relative to specifications.
They provide heating and cooling:
A cold climate heat pump is an efficient appliance for regulating the climate in your home. It provides heat and cold whenever you demand it, often at the touch of a button or via a phone app. You don’t need two independent units for each function. Its capability makes it easy to achieve and control the desired temperature.
Enjoy energy savings:
Cold climate heat pumps are 400% energy efficient when temperatures rise above 8.3% and remain 200% efficient when temperatures drop to zero. These efficiencies, combined with the fact that heat pumps do not generate energy, only transfer it, mean that they use substantially less energy. Most sources estimate that households can save 30% to 50% on their electricity bills. On average, you save about $1,000 or more per year. They improve the air quality inside your home.
Unlike other heating approaches, cold-weather heat pumps do not burn, smoke, or produce gas. This means that it does not introduce pollutants into the indoor air. The heat pump circulates the air in the room and at the same time filters and cleans the air. Removes mold spores, smoke, dust particles, and odors. This action improves air quality, making the pump ideal for people with allergies or asthma.
They are environmentally friendly:
Heat pumps are an environmentally friendly approach of heating and cooling a space. It does not emit CO2 because it does not rely on direct combustion to develop heat. Even the little power they use is only used to power the compressor. It is therefore environmentally friendly and helps cut down the carbon footprint of your home.
Helps prevent condensation in your family:
Cooling with a cold air heat pump in the summer has a dehumidifying effect. In winter, a heat pump distributes warm air throughout your home, preventing condensation from forming in your home. Keeping condensation and excess moisture outside your home will help preserve color and prevent mildew.