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Can a heat pump also be used to cool my property?

Some models of heat pumps can act as both heating and cooling units.  However, not all models have this capability.  So if you have this requirement it needs to be made clear at the design stage so that a suitable specification system can be designed.

Heat pumps normally extract heat from cool air outside.  This heat is absorbed by a refrigerant that is compressed to heat it up.  A heat exchanger then transmits this heat into your home’s wet central heating system or blows out warm air into the home providing building heating.   We have further information about how air source heat pumps and ground source heat pumps work so take a look at those pages if you would like to learn more.

To provide cooling, heat pumps can be reversed, extracting heat from the home and releasing it outside. If you have an air-to-air heat pump installed, heat pump cooling systems work similarly to air conditioning units.  In the UK the default setting on a reversible heat pump would be heating.  Reversible heat pump systems are designed to work adequately in both modes, however the efficiency is typically slightly less than two separately optimised pumps.  If you are looking for an air-to-water heat pump system it would be necessary to install a fan unit inside your home to circulate cold air within the building.

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