Possible Upgrades

 

Upgrading Air Filters

 

See this page for a discussion on air filters. Whatever your filter type, you must change or clean it regularly to maintain the efficiency of your heat pump.

Adding a Heat Recovery Ventilator

 

You can improve the indoor air quality of your home by adding a heat recovery ventilator (HRV). Adding an HRV is also a good idea if you are improving the sealing and insulation of your home while installing a GXS. A more airtight R-2000 home, for example, will take in less fresh air and so justify the installation of a separate fresh-air distribution system incorporating an HRV. This device adds fresh air to the home,but preheats it with an air-to-air heat exchanger that transfers heat from an equivalent flow of air leaving the home. Thus the air balance in your home is maintained, while you recover some 60–80 percent of the heat energy that would otherwise be expelled from your home.

The installation of an HRV will increase the energy consumption of your home if it has no fresh air system at all, because even though the air is preheated by the expelled air, the HRV cannot recover all of the heat. When compared to a fresh air system with no heat recovery, however, an HRV saves you energy costs. The device can be integrated into your existing forced-air system or added as a separate system to your home.

Controls

 

See this page for a discussion on controls for a GXS in a new home. The same controls apply to an existing home, with some differences in the way you control the humidity.

If you are changing to a GXS from a gas or oil furnace, you will be less likely to need a humidifier, as the dry outside air being drawn in to meet the combustion demands of the furnace will no longer be a problem.

If you plan to install an HRV, the amount of dry outside air entering the home increases and a humidifier may become necessary. If you are installing a GXS and planning to use your existing forced-air distribution system, it would be better to replace the standard bypass humidifier with a non-bypass type. A bypass unit will lower the performance of the heat pump and reduce the quantity of air delivered to the registers. If you are keeping your current hydronic system as your heating distribution system, a portable humidifier may be an option, particularly if you are adding an HRV to the system.

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