Central heat pump systems are a good option for houses that already have a properly designed duct system. This type of system provides heating, cooling and ventilation in a simple whole-house solution, controlled by one thermostat.

Central air source split heat pump systems consist of an outdoor heat exchanger unit connected to a single indoor air handling unit with a blower. The indoor unit is attached to ducting that distributes conditioned air throughout the building.

It is possible to install a heat pump system as an add-on to an existing furnace. Combining a heat pump with a natural gas or oil furnace reduces fossil fuel consumption, while maintaining supplemental heat. However, some of the heat pump rebates available in BC require removal of existing fossil fuel heating systems to qualify.

Heat pumps with a single-stage compressor, such as the Ion TSH6 from Tempstar, offer a balance between cost and efficiency, and are generally more affordable when it comes to replacing parts.

Premium central ducted heat pumps, such as the Ion TVH8 from Tempstar, are inverter-driven, so the compressor and fan motor speeds modulate to match temperature conditions and demand. This smoother, smarter operation makes the system more efficient and quiet than conventional heat pump systems. Variable speed systems can also operate more effectively in colder outdoor temperatures, so a back-up source of heat may not be needed.

The small inverter-based heat pumps used with ductless mini-split systems, can also be paired with full size ducted indoor air handlers. This crossover solution brings the benefits of a smaller, quieter, more energy efficient outdoor unit to the traditional whole home central ducted HVAC system.

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