Heat pumps are becoming the go-to source for air temperature control in many Canadian homes, mainly due in part to energy efficiency and the latest federal government rebate program. This type of heating/cooling system uses indoor and outdoor air to heat or cool a building based on transference.
The City of Toronto offers a Home Energy Loan Program providing up to $2,500 towards the purchase and installation of a new heat pump while the Canada Greener Homes Grant offers up to $5,000 to switch to heat pumps.
Benefits of Transitioning from Natural Gas Heating to Heat Pumps
Transitioning from natural gas heating to heat pumps offers several benefits for the environment, the home, and the occupants.
- Reduced greenhouse gas emissions: With heat pumps, there are no greenhouse gas emissions as the system depends on the use of electricity to run. As electricity produces lower carbon emissions, a heat pump system provides a better sustainable option.
- Lower energy consumption: Since heat pumps transfer air and don’t require a lot of energy like other systems do, they can reduce energy consumption.
- Reduced utility bills: The efficiency of a heat pump can be seen with reduced utility bills. Most savings can add up to more than $400 per year in comparison to those with gas heating.
- Improved indoor air quality: Aside from producing the appropriate air temperature, heat pumps help to improve the air quality, especially when switching from fossil fuels used with furnaces.
- Increased home comfort and heating consistency: A heat pump system provides more consistent heating and cooling without a drastic drop or increase in the air temperature as seen with other products.
Government Rebate Program and Eligibility Criteria
The Canada Greener Homes Initiative is designed to help Canadians have a more energy-efficient home. The program is a step in the government’s plan to fight climate change while helping Canadians save money.
The program is intended to help Canadians improve their comfort through window retrofits, new doors, insulation, air sealing, and renewable energy systems. This includes heat pumps.
Each Canadian homeowner can apply once for the Canada Greener Home Initiative. Eligibility also applies to Indigenous governments and housing management organizations.
Eligible Heat Pumps
- Ground source heat pumps
- Air source heat pumps
- Cold climate air source heat pumps
- Heat pump water heaters
- You must be the owner of the home
- The home must be your primary residence
- The home must be greater than 6 months old
- The home must be a single or semi-detached house, row house, townhouse, all-season cottage, mobile home on a permanent foundation, permanently moored floating home, mixed-use building, or small multi-unit residential building of three storey or less
Rebate Amounts and Program Duration
Candidates may be eligible for grants from $125 to $5,000 and up to $600 as a maximum contribution towards the total costs of pre- and post-retrofit EnerGuide home evaluations. The interest-free loan comes with a repayment plan of 10 years for monies up to $40,000.
Application Process and Deadlines
Candidates are required to apply online for the Canada Greener Homes Initiative to be submitted to the Natural Resources Canada department. A pre-and post-retrofit EnerGuide evaluation must be completed which will determine the appropriate retrofit needed as decided by a Renovation Upgrade Report. Candidates must retain all documents until March 31, 2028.
Tips for Choosing the Right Heat Pump and Proper Installation
A heat pump should be the proper size and have the capability to provide ample cooling and heating in the room(s). It should also be installed correctly to ensure it functions as it is intended to in your home. Here are some tips to consider:
Assess Your Home Heating Needs
It is important to have a professional technician assess your space for the right type, size, and efficiency model. A heat pump that is too big will not perform at top efficiency while one that is too small will work harder to compensate for the space.
Research Different Heat Pumps and Their Suitability
There are specific types of heat pumps for different uses, such as in industrial, commercial, and residential buildings. Determine which unit best suits your needs.
- Air-Source Heat Pumps: Buildings with ductwork can be fitted for ducted air-source heat pumps to exchange the air between the outside and inside. Refrigerants are used within the system to transform the outside air into hot or cold air throughout the house.
- Ground-Source Heat Pumps: A ground source or geothermal heat pump involves the use of ground-source or water-source units. The exchange of air takes place inside the home and below the surface of the soil or water source. This type is installed during the construction of a new building or home.
- Ductless Mini-Split Systems: A ductless mini-split heat pump uses both the outside and indoor air in conjunction with refrigerants without the need for ductwork to be installed. There is a condenser installed outside of the home with one or more air handlers inside.
Energy Efficiency Ratings and Certifications
A heat pump cooling efficiency is measured by a seasonal energy-efficiency rating (SEER) whereas the heating is measured as a heating seasonal performance factor (HSPF). In both cases, the higher the number, the better the efficiency operation.
Proper Installation and Regular Maintenance
Having a reputable company perform the installation, any repairs, and regular maintenance will maintain the warranty of the unit while guaranteeing the safe operation of the heat pump. The outdoor portion of the heat pump must be kept free and clear of snow, ice, debris, shrubs, and furniture to promote proper airflow and water drainage. Filters must also need to be cleaned and/or replaced on a regular basis.
How Econoair Can Help with the Transition and Rebate Program
With more than 20 years of serving the people of the Greater Toronto Area with specialized HVAC needs, we can suggest the right heat pump to enhance your comfort.
- Expertise in heat pump technology and installation
- Assistance in selecting the right heat pump for your home
- Guiding customers through the rebate application process
- Ongoing support and maintenance services
Econoair’s Commitment to Helping Customers Understand the Government Rebate Program
Econoair Heating & Cooling Inc. offers a comprehensive guide to help you transition from natural gas heating to heat pumps in your home or office. With our extensive experience and certifications, our team offers options to optimize the comfort and efficiency of your home. Call us at (905) 763-2400 to book an onsite consultation today!