Air Source Heat Pumps

Air Source Heat Pumps

More Comfort and Higher Efficiency. All Year Long.

Air source heat pumps are an all-electric system that deliver heat in the winter and air conditioning in the summer. They are an exceptionally competitive option to a traditional furnace and central AC system and provide home owners with all-season comfort.

If you are building a new home or are in the market to replace or upgrade your existing heating and cooling system, you’ll want to consider an air source heat pump. Thanks to new technology advancements, air source heat pumps are a great choice for cold climates like Michigan.

According to the Department of Energy, these all-electric heat pump units can deliver one-and-a-half to three times more heat energy to a home than the electrical energy it consumes, resulting in up to 300% efficiency. What’s more, these energy-smart units offer a wealth of additional benefits for homeowners.

Benefits of Air Source Heat Pumps

Air source heat pumps provide extremely consistent temperature, avoiding the hot and cold spikes common in traditional heating and cooling systems. Air source heat pumps don’t turn on and off at certain temperature thresholds. Instead, they continuously run to maintain the desired temperature.

Because heat pumps deliver a steady supply of temperature-controlled air, noise caused by the expansion and contraction of heat ducts is eliminated. In addition, both the indoor and outdoor air source heat pump components are whisper quiet

Switching from propane, fuel oil, an electric furnace or electric baseboard heating will result in significant savings every year. Visit the Northeast Energy Efficiency Partnerships website to learn more about annual savings when using an air source heat pump.

In existing homes, an air source heat pump is an easy upgrade because there are systems designed to work in almost any application, with or without air ducts. In a new home, heat pumps provide additional flexibility by eliminating the need for both duct work and a furnace exhaust vent.

Having one system for heating and cooling simplifies your maintenance regimen when compared to a traditional system.

Talk To A Contractor

Are you in the market for a new heating and cooling system? DTE makes it easy to find a contractor near you with our Energy Efficiency Directory. Select "Heat Pump Replacement" to find contractors that sell and install air source heat pumps.

*NOTE: Not all equipment and services qualify. DTE Energy does not endorse any particular manufacturer, product or installer.

How It Works

Air source heat pumps use electricity to transfer energy between indoor and outdoor air. Because they move heat rather than generate heat, these systems consume far less electricity than electric furnaces, baseboard heaters or space heaters.

In cooling mode, the heat pump functions like an air conditioner, moving heat from inside to outside the home. In heating mode, the refrigerant flow is reversed to extract low-temperature heat from outdoors and deliver concentrated high-temperature heat to the home.

Three Types of Air Source Heat Pump Systems

A centrally-ducted air source heat pump system is typically used when ducts are already available throughout the home (for example, when replacing an existing furnace and central air conditioner).

A multi-head ductless mini-split system is typically installed when there is no existing ducting or if the homeowner wants zoned control of individual rooms (main living area or bedrooms).

A single-head ductless mini-split system is often installed when trying to heat and cool a specific area of the home, such as add-on rooms, that weren’t ducted.

Heating and Cooling Ratings

Heating efficiency for air source electric heat pumps is indicated by the heating season performance factor (HSPF). This is the total space heating required during the heating season, expressed in Btu, divided by the total electrical energy consumed by the heat pump system during the same season, expressed in watt-hours. The higher the HSPF, the more efficient the unit.

Cooling efficiency is indicated by the seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER). It is determined by the total heat removed from the conditioned space during the annual cooling season, expressed in Btu, divided by the total electrical energy consumed by the heat pump during the same season, expressed in watt-hours. The higher the SEER rating, the more efficient the air source heat pump.

Air Source Heat Pump Energy Pricing Options

Air source heat pumps qualify for the D1.1 CoolCurrents® rate, helping you to save even more. CoolCurrents is DTE’s interruptible air conditioning rate that can help customers save significantly on the energy used by an air source heat pump. Rest assured, we do not interrupt service during the heating season (October through April).

DTE Energy does not sell or install air source heat pump systems. Customers must have a licensed, independent, electrical contractor install the wiring for a separate D1.1 meter. Please see the Electric Pricing Options page for enrollment instructions and additional information on the D1.1 CoolCurrents rate.

Additional Resources

For more details about air source heat pumps, see the Air Source Heat Pump page on the Department of Energy website.

DTE Air Source Heat Pump Rebates

With an air source heat pump rebate from DTE Energy, you can start saving right away. To raise your heating and cooling efficiency even more, be sure to check out our Ways to Save page.