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How Do Heat Pumps Actually Work?


Using a heat pump to both heat and cool your Florida home is a very efficient choice to keep your home comfortable all year long. Heat pumps serve as all-in-one units, with the same basic set up as an air conditioner used to perform heating functions as well as AC functions.

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Does a heat pump use refrigerant? Yes, absolutely. Without refrigerant gas, the heat pump wouldn’t be able to function, which makes this fluid an integral part of the unit’s ability to operate. Keep reading to learn more about the refrigerant process and how this enables your heat pump to actually operate.

The Refrigerant Process

Refrigerant begins as a gas before it enters a compression valve in your heat pump that subjects it to a large amount of heat and pressure. Then, it releases the gas into a series of compression coils, where the heat bleeds off and the gas reverts to a liquid. From that point, it moves through an expansion valve, which releases a pre-determined amount into a series of evaporator coils. As it evaporates, it cools the surrounding air, reverting to a gas, and returns back to the compression valve to start the cycle again.

In the winter time, a reversing valve allows you to switch this process to heat your home. True, we don’t need to worry about that too much in Florida, but that is what makes heat pumps such a good choice—they function best in climates that have long, hot summers and fairly mild winters. They can actually struggle in climates that are too chilly, as their heater function works by absorbing heat in the outside air and distributing it through the home. The process in which your heat pump goes through to heat and cool your home is very cost-efficient—often even more so than the traditional gas furnace.

Contact IERNA’s Heating & Cooling today for your Land O’ Lakes, FL heat pump services.