The technology for heating our homes without oil or natural gas has been used in other countries for decades, but hasn't seen mass adoption in the United States until now. Heat pumps, which come as air source or ground source, are capable of heating and cooling homes and even water in cold climates like ours.
Say goodbye to natural gas and oil in your basement, as well as the supertoxic methane emitted when natural gas is extracted from the earth or leaked in our neighborhoods. When you upgrade to a heat pump, you can keep the equivalent of up to 8,000 pounds of carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere each year!
If your furnace or water heater is within two years of its life span, or you are about to spring for central air conditioning, install heat pumps in your home instead. You can save thousands by using incentives and rebates like the ones offered by MassSave, the Mass Clean Energy Center (Mass CEC), and the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources, through their Home Energy Market Value Performance Program (Mass Home MVP). Some towns also have a discount on heat pump installations through the Mass HeatSmart program - check with your town.
Cold weather air source heat pumps, which provide both heating and cooling depending on the time of year, come in 2 types: ducted and ductless. Ductless heat pumps have a split indoor/outdoor system, with each outdoor unit supporting up to 5 indoor heads (super-quiet individual units that can be controlled independently). Ducted systems work very similarly to traditional air conditioning systems, but provide heating from the same outdoor unit, also. There are even high velocity ducted heat pumps that have a very low duct footprint and could be a good solution for older or historic homes.
Step 1: Ask MassSave to conduct an audit of your home, at no cost to you.
Step 2: Be prepared to insulate your home, if it is not well-insulated already. You can use Mass Save insulation and air sealing incentives to make your home heat pump ready.
Step 3: Find a contractor who has been approved by the MassSave program, or, if yours is a larger project, the Home MVP program. They will guide you through the installation process, and help you apply for incentives and rebates. MassCEC and Mass Save both offer incentives for heat pumps.
If you have questions about replacing oil or gas with electric heat pumps, please email us at email@example.com.