Heat pumps are some of the most efficient types of heating systems available to St. Louis area homeowners. Because they work by moving heat instead of creating it (like a furnace), they typically consume much less energy than other types of heating systems and are less expensive to operate. When you’re choosing a heat pump for your home, one of the most important factors to consider is the unit’s HSPF rating.

What is an HSPF rating?

HSPF stands for Heating Seasonal Performance Factor. It is a number that describes the efficiency of different heat pumps. You can find the HSPF rating on the EnergyGuide label of any heat pump and use it to choose a unit based on efficiency. The higher the HPSF of a given heat pump, the more efficient that unit is.

How is an HSPF rating calculated?

HSPF ratings are calculated similarly to the way SEER ratings are calculated for air conditioners, except that an HSPF rating describes a system’s heating output instead of its cooling output. An HSPF rating is the total amount of heating required over a year (measured in BTUs) divided by the amount of energy a given heat pump consumes (measured in watt-hours). A heat pump with a high HSPF rating can heat a home by using fewer energy units than heat pumps with lower HSPF ratings.

How high of an HSPF rating should you look for?

The most efficient heat pumps available on the market have HSPF ratings between 8 and 10 (with 10 being the highest HSPF rating that’s available). Because heat pumps are used for both heating and cooling, they are given both an HSPF rating (for heating efficiency) and a SEER rating (for cooling efficiency). You can use both ratings to choose a unit that meets your preferred efficiency requirements.

To qualify for the EnergyStar label, air-source heat pumps must have an HSPF rating of at least 8 and a SEER rating of at least 14.

If you have any questions about an HSPF rating, or if you’d like a heating and cooling system serviced or installed in your home, contact Jerry Kelly Heating & Air Conditioning, your St. Louis HVAC company. We service the St. Louis area and surrounding towns like St. Charles, Creve Coeur, and Winghaven.

photo credit: Norberg via photopin cc

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