A heat pump is a highly useful device for creating hot water and can work in many ways to ensure that your water stays warm and that your carbon footprint stays small. Here we will look at precisely what a heat pump is, how it works and what the various types of heat pump are.
A heat pump is essentially a device that pumps water in order to ensure that it is warm (it can also refer to an air heat pump, but in this case we are talking about water heat pumps). The way this works is by pumping the water from one area – where it is heated, to another – whereh it is needed. This way then for instance you can have your water heated in a tank and then pumped using the heat pump in order to provide you with it when you need it.
Often though to count as a heat pump the device will heat the water itself – otherwise it is really just a 'pump'. For instance it is possible to get small electric heat pumps by your taps in showers and in baths. The way this then works is to pump the water around the device where it will be subjected to heating via a metal coil which will then heat it up ready to be used. This kind of heat pump has many benefits compared to heating the water in the tank, because it means that you aren't having to heat up an entire tank of water when you are only going to use perhaps a bath full or even just have a short shower. This then means that you are literally only heating up the water that you need in order to use it.
It is also possible to get heat pumps in other situations. For instance sometimes you get a heat pump inside the tank in order to ensure that the hot water is in the right place to be used at all times. In other cases heat pumps will be used in swimming pools in order to heat up your pool water. You can also get heat pumps that use other sources of energy other than electric energy from a mains supply. For instance a geothermal heat pump is a heat pump that works by directing your water deep underground where the earth is very warm. The water then runs around this area and gets heated up by the surrounding land before being directed back to the surface or into the pool much warmer.
The way the heat pump works is by using a fan. The fan will spin round and propel the water away from it, which will leave there less water behind it where that water came from. This then creates an area of low pressure behind the fan, and due to a process called 'equalization' this causes more water to rush to fill that void thus ensuring that the water continues to flow. The pressure then pushes this water around the coils or the pipes to get heated by the surrounding area.
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