Heat Pump Program
Your Smartest Investment in Comfort
Heating and cooling costs equal approximately half of your home’s energy budget. A heat pump can be used year-round, warming your home in the winter and cooling it in the summer. It also offers cost-savings, choice and comfort.
Cost Savings. A lower winter electric rate is offered to qualified purchasers who buy and install a new heat pump. The Residential Conservation Heat Pump Rate – 115 covers the period from October 1 through May 31 annually. Review the heat pump requirements to ensure you are purchasing a qualifying heat pump.
Choice. As your energy partner, Omaha Public Power District recommends the use of high efficiency heat pumps because they provide more control over your winter heating costs, which saves you money. It’s called “energy choice”. The energy choice is yours. Since utility prices fluctuate, heat pumps optimize the best use of both gas and electricity – giving you the choice on how to manage your energy use.
Comfort. A heat pump is designed to provide even heating and cooling throughout your entire home. After a heat pump is installed, a verification of the system is available at no charge. An OPPD representative will come to your home to make certain your new heat pump is operating effectively.
How a Heat Pump Works
A heat pump is an air conditioner with a reversing valve enabling it to heat as well as cool your home.
In cold weather, the heat pump moves heat from outside into the house for dependable heating, eliminating the use of your furnace on all but the coldest days of the year. In a typical Nebraska winter, it provides at least 80 percent of your home’s heating needs. Your furnace provides the remaining heat on the coldest winter days, when it’s most efficient.
- Outdoor coil extracts heat from outdoor air
- Refrigerant gas carries heat to indoor unit
- Circulating indoor air picks up heat and carries it throughout the home
In warm weather, the heat pump works like a standard high-efficiency air conditioner, moving heat outside from the inside air, cooling your home in even the hottest months. During the cooling cycle, the heat pump also dehumidifies the indoor air.
- Indoor coil extracts heat from the air in your home
- Refrigerant gas carries heat to outdoor unit
- Outdoor coil transfers heat to outdoor air
Heat Pump Types
An air source heat pump replaces your outdoor air conditioner and can be installed in a home that has an electric, natural gas or propane furnace.
Efficiency ratings for an air source heat pump are designated by:
- Heating Seasonal Performance Factor (HSPF) – for heating
- Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) – for cooling
A higher efficiency rating means a lower cost of operation. It is important to pay attention to the HSPF rating because the Nebraska heating season lasts six times longer than the cooling season.
A water source heat pump also known as geothermal heat pump uses water for absorbing heat in the winter and releasing heat in the summer. Water source heat pumps are among the most efficient because they take advantage of the ground’s constant temperature.
Efficiency ratings for a water source or geothermal heat pump are designated by:
- Coefficient of Performance (COP) – for heating
- Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) – for cooling
A higher efficiency rating means a lower cost of operation. It is important to pay attention to the COP rating because the Nebraska heating season lasts six times longer than the cooling season.
Sizing and Efficiency
A heat pump allows you to maximize the comfort of your home. Your heating and cooling contractor should complete a load calculation to right-size your heat pump. You choose the level of efficiency you prefer based on heat pump efficiencies available. Your heating and cooling contractor will help you estimate your energy savings
If needed, and regardless of your heat pump choice, have your contractor evaluate your duct system and make recommendations to improve airflow. Improved airflow will also improve your comfort level.
It is important to service your heating and cooling equipment like you service your automobile. To maintain your heat pump at peak efficiency, have your system serviced each spring and fall.
Plan the ongoing care of your system with your heating and cooling contractor at the time of purchase. Having a maintenance agreement saves you money, ensures your high-efficiency system continues to operate at peak performance, entitles you to priority service, and protects your investment.
Choosing a Heating and Cooling Contractor
Irrespective of which brand you select, quality installation of your heating and cooling equipment is one of the most important issues for you to consider. The quality with which the system is installed is directly related to the long-term reliability and efficiency of your new system.
For guidance on finding the right heating and cooling contractor, take a look at the recommendations provided by the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA), North American Technician Excellence Advice (NATE), and the Air Conditioning Heating and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI). These three national heating and cooling organizations are well respected within the industry and provide terrific guidance and customer information.
Many answers to questions regarding the Heat Pump Program may be found in the heat pump FAQ, or you may call 402-636-3753 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.