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Climate Resilience!
General News · 9th November 2022
Lisa Ferentinos
Why Heat Pumps?

As firewood becomes more costly and difficult to obtain on Cortes, heat pumps are a potential alternative method of heating (and also cooling) homes. They help with both climate change mitigation and adaptation. Burning firewood is more carbon intensive than coal per unit of energy created. As heat pumps run on hydro electricity, they will reduce your household's carbon footprint, while also cooling your home to cope with rising summer temperatures and increasingly frequent heat waves. Homes cooled by heat pumps were able to provide shelter during the 2021 heat dome. Heat pumps are 180 to 300% more efficient than baseboard heaters and 50% more efficient at cooling than most window AC units according to BC Hydro. Heat pumps are relatively easy to install and function well for 15 to 20 years, if properly maintained. They generally require maintenance only once per year.

How to find out more:

Come to a presentation by Kuan-Jian Foo of Coast Building Systems, a certified energy auditor and expert on federal and provincial energy retrofit rebates. Please come with your questions!

Survey: Home Heating on Cortes

Wed like to create a home energy consultant so residents can get assistance with heat pumps, energy retrofits and rebate paperwork.

In order to judge the level of interest, please fill in this short survey. Thanks!

How Do Heat Pumps Work?

Heat pumps work just like an air conditioner- Refrigerant gets circulated through the heat exchange and a compressor. It is connected to a thermostat so you can adjust the temperature inside your home according to your comfort level. In winter, a heat pump pulls heat from exterior air and uses it to warm your house. Heat can be extracted from the environment, even at low temperatures. For newer models, this can be as low as minus 15C to minus 25C. In summer, it draws out the warm air inside and releases it out through the coils, leaving your house cooler.

This drawing shows the compressor (middle) and 2 copper or aluminum coils (one indoors, one out), which have aluminum fins to aid heat transfer. In heating mode, liquid refrigerant in the outside coil removes heat from the air and evaporates into a gas. The indoor coil releases heat from the refrigerant as it condenses back into a liquid. A reversing valve changes the direction of the refrigerant flow for cooling mode, as well as for defrosting the outdoor coil in winter.

Join us at Manson's Hall Pioneer Room 4-5:30, Sat. November 12 to learn more.