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Topic # 240524 12-Sep-2018 09:57
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Hi all,

Slightly different topic from all the other heat-pump topics on geekzone.  I currently rent (with an excellent landlord who is happy for me to live in the house like its my own, so I can paint, change things around, etc.)  We currently use electric heating but with such a cold winter and being in muggy Auckland we have decided to get a heat-pump, but we need one that can be moved when we move out. Some specs:

* The house is insulated (floor and ceiling) and is a single level brick and tile.
* I am looking to have this in the living area.  Lounge is 6.5m x 4m, standard height, large opening to dining / kitchen which is 6.5m x 3.

What I am wondering is are there any heat-pumps that would be better from a "easy to remove and return the house to good" again?  I assume floor units are better than high wall options as they can be free standing? Or are they screwed to the wall?

I have considered portable units but understand they are quite noisy (due to the pump being inside).

Anything else I haven't considered?


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  Reply # 2088071 12-Sep-2018 10:09
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I think heat pumps are generally permanent. Might be better to get your landlord to fit one and pay a bit more rent.




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  Reply # 2088072 12-Sep-2018 10:09
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I was in a similar situation (long term rental, was keen on a heatpump) though didn't really think about portable heatpump options at the time.

 

I offered to pay something towards getting a fixed heatpump to landlord, rationale being that they would then end up with an asset when we move out and we would get the use of it while living here but that never did happen.

 

In the end I just ended up buying a fairly grunty dehumidifier and tend to run that all night.  I've found that by running conventional heaters for my free hour of power (with electric kiwi) in the evening, I can get away with the minimal heating the dehumidifier offers for the rest of the night most nights (though I do occasionally supplement with an oil heater in kids room) - it seems to keep the upper level of house nice and warm and windows dry, etc.  Power usage is not too bad, I think less than when I've run conventional heaters all night in the past. A proper heatpump would be better but this was my fallback and I'm pretty happy with it for now... 


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  Reply # 2088075 12-Sep-2018 10:12
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The biggest issue you will have is that the refrigerant pipes between the External and internal units need to go from the inside to the outside,

 

You probably need to get an installer around and see what options they have.

 

Off the top of my head if the house is on piles the easiest way would be to locate the external unit near a under-house "vent" and run the piping through the vent and then up through the floor to a floor based interior unit...

 

What you leave the only thing you would need to fix would be the holes in the floor...

 

 

 

 

 

 


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  Reply # 2088083 12-Sep-2018 10:35
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Depending on the size of the house (the area that the Heatpump needs to heat), it may be better just to put a permanent heatpump in and leave it there.

 

If you Landlord is good, and you have no concerns about being evicted in the medium term, then the power savings from installing a Heatpump may well pay the cost of buying and installing it. You can get them installed for less than $2k, how long would that take to pay back with cheaper power bills (and a warmer home)?


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  Reply # 2088096 12-Sep-2018 10:55
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Have you calculated the economic benefit from having a heat pump? I personally use a dehumidifier and oil column heater and my total power usage is only around 4,000kwh per year despite having electric cooking and hot water. My case might not be typical as I live alone and don't spend a lot of time at home, but I still struggle to see how anyone in a well insulated house could get an economic payback from a heat pump within 5 years. If you are renting it hardly seems worth it unless you have exceptional circumstances.


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  Reply # 2088146 12-Sep-2018 11:32
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alasta:

 

but I still struggle to see how anyone in a well insulated house could get an economic payback from a heat pump within 5 years.

 

 

Try this

 

https://www.noelleeming.co.nz/shop/household-appliances/heating-cooling/heat-pumps-air-conditioning/inverter-high-wall/fujitsu-astg09lvcapackage-hi-wall-inverter-heat-pump/prod110032.html

 

$1700 / 3.4 kw heat output. COP of 4.3 ( call it 4)  that's 800w input.. so you are saving 2600w in electricity for every hour you run this H/P compared to resistance heating at 1:1

 

if you ran this heater for 5 hours a night for 6 months of the year  that's 900 hours ( give or take)

 

900 hours at 2.6Kwh is 2340 kwh ... at 25c/unit that's $580/year in savings vs install price of $1700.... that's a pretty good bang for your buck...

 

you can play with the assumptions ( number of hours used, number of days) but its certainly feasible to get a 5 year payback from a heatpump, especially if you have kids

 

 


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  Reply # 2088156 12-Sep-2018 11:43
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alasta:

 

Have you calculated the economic benefit from having a heat pump? I personally use a dehumidifier and oil column heater and my total power usage is only around 4,000kwh per year despite having electric cooking and hot water. My case might not be typical as I live alone and don't spend a lot of time at home, but I still struggle to see how anyone in a well insulated house could get an economic payback from a heat pump within 5 years. If you are renting it hardly seems worth it unless you have exceptional circumstances.

 

 

You might not get the price of an installed heat pump back in electricity savings in 5 years. Almost definitely not actually - if you add up the hours that you used a heater over the past 12 months, and take the difference in electricity use if you had used a heat pump for those hours, the numbers will look OK. However, that doesn't take into account the extra hours you will almost certainly end up running it, especially the extra hours over summer to cool the place down.

 

You also have to take into account the value of it to you in convenience, health and comfort. If you're currently using an unflued gas heater, there's the savings in condensation damage to your (and your landlord's) fittings, curtains etc.


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  Reply # 2089179 12-Sep-2018 12:02
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Last summer for the first time, we used air conditioning extensively. It cost less than heating as we used it less, but roughly comparable with winter power bills. Totally worth it, and while not as important as heating really makes things more comfortable.





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  Reply # 2089182 12-Sep-2018 12:03
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trig42:

 

Depending on the size of the house (the area that the Heatpump needs to heat), it may be better just to put a permanent heatpump in and leave it there.

 

If you Landlord is good, and you have no concerns about being evicted in the medium term, then the power savings from installing a Heatpump may well pay the cost of buying and installing it. You can get them installed for less than $2k, how long would that take to pay back with cheaper power bills (and a warmer home)?

 



This is on one of the drivers - our power bills over winter have been more than enough to cover the cost of a heatpump. So the savings from having one installed would easily be recouped in just one winter.




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  Reply # 2089187 12-Sep-2018 12:05
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BlueShift:

 

alasta:

 

Have you calculated the economic benefit from having a heat pump? I personally use a dehumidifier and oil column heater and my total power usage is only around 4,000kwh per year despite having electric cooking and hot water. My case might not be typical as I live alone and don't spend a lot of time at home, but I still struggle to see how anyone in a well insulated house could get an economic payback from a heat pump within 5 years. If you are renting it hardly seems worth it unless you have exceptional circumstances.

 

 

You might not get the price of an installed heat pump back in electricity savings in 5 years. Almost definitely not actually - if you add up the hours that you used a heater over the past 12 months, and take the difference in electricity use if you had used a heat pump for those hours, the numbers will look OK. However, that doesn't take into account the extra hours you will almost certainly end up running it, especially the extra hours over summer to cool the place down.

 

You also have to take into account the value of it to you in convenience, health and comfort. If you're currently using an unflued gas heater, there's the savings in condensation damage to your (and your landlord's) fittings, curtains etc.

 



Actually that's a really good point.  At the moment we only use heating when really needed. But when we had a heat pump before we just set and forget it, so it runs far more often.  And of course we get to use it in summer.

A big NO to unflued gas heaters, hate the things.




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  Reply # 2089221 12-Sep-2018 12:38
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sidefx:

 

I was in a similar situation (long term rental, was keen on a heatpump) though didn't really think about portable heatpump options at the time.

 

I offered to pay something towards getting a fixed heatpump to landlord, rationale being that they would then end up with an asset when we move out and we would get the use of it while living here but that never did happen.

 

In the end I just ended up buying a fairly grunty dehumidifier and tend to run that all night.  I've found that by running conventional heaters for my free hour of power (with electric kiwi) in the evening, I can get away with the minimal heating the dehumidifier offers for the rest of the night most nights (though I do occasionally supplement with an oil heater in kids room) - it seems to keep the upper level of house nice and warm and windows dry, etc.  Power usage is not too bad, I think less than when I've run conventional heaters all night in the past. A proper heatpump would be better but this was my fallback and I'm pretty happy with it for now... 

 



I did this way back when in another house - and a much better dehumidifier, so that may be a good option.  And could help with summer as well.


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  Reply # 2089813 13-Sep-2018 10:50
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Another option - assuming that the house has ali windows, some of them it is very easy to remove the glass. In which case, remove the glass, cut a piece of Seratone or similar to fit the window. Then run the pipes through the Seratone.

Attach the indoor unit to an old tall bookcase that you have placed in front of the window. Put bricks on the bottom level of the bookcase to keep it stable.

Get a heatpump with a starting current of less than 10A (not an issue with inverter heatpumps) So you can get power from an existing power point.

When you move out, reinstall the glass into the window.





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  Reply # 2089893 13-Sep-2018 11:22
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Installing a heat pump is about $1000. So if you install, remove, reinstall ... how much will that cost!




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  Reply # 2089916 13-Sep-2018 11:37
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Aredwood: Another option - assuming that the house has ali windows, some of them it is very easy to remove the glass. In which case, remove the glass, cut a piece of Seratone or similar to fit the window. Then run the pipes through the Seratone.

Attach the indoor unit to an old tall bookcase that you have placed in front of the window. Put bricks on the bottom level of the bookcase to keep it stable.

Get a heatpump with a starting current of less than 10A (not an issue with inverter heatpumps) So you can get power from an existing power point.

When you move out, reinstall the glass into the window.


Unfortunately its wooden windows, but I like the basic idea.




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  Reply # 2089919 13-Sep-2018 11:40
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Batman:

 

Installing a heat pump is about $1000. So if you install, remove, reinstall ... how much will that cost!

 



Very good point, although I thought basic back-to-back installs where closer to $500 (but a quick Google shows around $700 as the cheapest).  Wasn't it DeLonghi that did the "quick connect" heat pumps a few years ago, which where pre-charged and simply needed connecting from the indoor unit to the outdoor?  I installed one myself a few years ago.  Are they still around?


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