Frequently Asked Questions Hoteliers Have about Heat Pumps

According to a World Green Building Council study, energy-efficient heating and cooling systems improve ventilation and comfort and raise worker productivity by 11 percent.

To help dispel common myths about heat pumps, we sat down with Senior Energy Engineer Kevin Silveira, PE, CEM at National Grid to find out the answers to the common questions hoteliers have about heat pumps, their efficiency and the installation process.

Q: If a hotel wants to upgrade to heat pumps on their property, where should they start on that process?
The best starting point is the National Grid website. (ngrid.com/business) This website will have the most up-to-date incentives and programs available to assist in the electrification process. This will allow hoteliers to figure out which utilities offer what incentives. Then hoteliers will need to connect with a qualified contractor or engineer to do a full specification of the hotel property. Larger hotels will need an engineer while smaller properties can often just use a local contractor. The contractor or engineer will then conduct a heat load study of the building, which is key to installing the correct equipment for that specific property.

Q: Do heat pumps help reduce greenhouse gas emissions?
Heat pumps are the most efficient heating systems currently on the market. With the projected “greening” of the grid, the long-term use of heat pumps will significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions. With the internal calculations being done by Mass Save, the grid will have additional solar, wind turbine and hydro sources and within five years, we will be reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Q: Do heat pumps work to heat and cool guestrooms?
Properly sized heat pumps will be able to satisfy any hotel requirements and guests desires. It is key to install a piece of equipment that properly designed to meet all of your needs all of the time. This is why the heat load study at the beginning of the installation process is needed and hoteliers need to be mindful of the extremes. If a guestroom typically sees two people in a room on a 90-degree day, what will happen when a family of four is staying in there on a 100-degree day? Heat pumps will work as they have been designed to do so it’s important to install the right product at the beginning.

Q: Do heat pumps help with air comfort?
A heat pump system offers highly efficient heating, air conditioning, and dehumidification. Like a refrigerator or AC unit, a heat pump controls temperature by transferring heat from a cool space to a warm space, making the cool space cooler and the warm space warmer. For instance, in colder months, it moves heat from the cool outdoors into a building’s interior. In hot weather, it moves heat from inside a structure into the outdoors. By transferring rather than generating heat, these systems can be much more efficient than conventional heating and cooling.

Q: Where can hoteliers find information about incentives to install heat pumps?
Learn more about commercial heat pump incentives offered through National Grid in Massachusetts and Upstate New York.

The editorial staff had no role in this post's creation.