Hybrid Electric Heat-Pump Water Heaters
Hybrid heat-pump water heaters work by pulling heat out of the surrounding air and pumping it into the storage tank. So if you live in a warm climate, like we do, and install it in your hot attic or garage, the heat pump alone can save you money. The conventional heating coils come on only when the heat pump can no longer satisfy the demand.
- An electric hybrid heat pump has the lowest operating cost of any electric water heater on the market, when installed in warm climates. They may also qualify for rebates and tax incentives.
- Hybrids cost much more than a conventional electric heater.
- The heat pump is taller (and wider in some cases) than your existing electric heater. Make sure the unit will fit.
- Some heaters are “side-piped” to eliminate the possibility of heat pump damage caused by leaking pipes. On those models, you’ll have to reconfigure the water pipes.
- You have to clean the air filter regularly to maintain operating efficiency.
- The heater needs at least 1,000 cu. ft. of air surrounding it.
What to look for:
EF rating of 2.0 and the highest “first-hour rating.”
Is it for you?
If you heat water with electricity, an electric hybrid heat pump will save you the most money over a conventional heater. The higher your electric rates and the warmer the year-round climate, the faster the payback. In many cases, the payback can be as little as four years.