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In my basement I have a rather large Air Exchanger: Air Exchanger

I have heard that if I install a heat pump I may be able to replace the air exchange. This gives me two benefits that I can see:

  1. The Heat Pump will be outside. Giving me more space in my cramped basement.
  2. The Heat Pump will lower the temperature a bit in the house during summer (I have no air conditioning).

However, there are a few things that I'm not sure of:

  • Can the heatpump re-use my existing vents that are installed though the house for the air exchange?
  • I'm not 100% positive what the air exchange is used for… I know that it keeps the dew from forimg in the inside of windows during winter. Will the heat pump do this as well?
  • I use oil for heat and hot water. To my understanding, I will not need to use oil as much for heat (unless its a very hot day). So my oil consumption should go down, although the heat pump will increase my power charges. Is this going to be worth it?
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up vote 1 down vote accepted

I'm not sure if there are versions of heat pumps that have the compressor and evaporator both outside, but mine has the compressor outside and the evaporator/air handler inside, which is about the same size as the air exchanger you have in the picture. So if you install a system similar to mine, you won't have any space savings.

On another note, heat pumps are only really usefull in areas that don't have harsh winters. Their optimal range for heating is 40°-55°F, and they don't perform efficiently in colder climates.

I'd talk to a local HVAC installer to see what type of system is best suited for your climate if you're dead set on changing the type of system you have installed.

More on Wikipedia

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