heat pumps

Best Heat Pumps for Vancouver Island

What are the best heat pumps for BC homes?

We often have people walk into our head office in Nanaimo who can’t seem to find a straight answer to which heat pump would work best for them.

The truth is heat pumps have been around for many decades and there are new options coming out every year. Our family has been installing heat pumps on Vancouver Island since the 1970’s!

The “Best”  Heat Pump Equipment to us would cover these bases:

  • Cold Weather Performance
  • Technology
  • Reliable
  • Quiet
  • Efficient

The “Best” Heat Pump installation to us would cover:

  • Cleanliness
  • Engineered and Designed correctly
  • Punctual, Friendly & Smart Installers
  • Quick
  • All inclusive price for a custom solution
  • Paperwork all completed for you

The Best Heat Pump is not a brand, it is a good quality one that is engineered and installed correctly.

Heat Pumps can be categorized as:

Geothermal Heat Pumps that absorb heat from the ground or a body of water via a loop or a series of deep drilled holes. They have the potential to be the most efficient to operate. An engineered geothermal Heat Pump has the highest efficiency potential when engineered and installed correctly. Due to the complex engineering and installation cost, these systems tend to be for very large homes, commercial and district heating. Beware: These systems are often not designed or installed correctly. It is extremely difficult to change the design afterwards. We would recommend these systems be designed only by a professional mechanical engineer.
We like the VRF indoor units from Mitsubishi Electric Heat Pumps paired with a geothermal Loop. These units can easily do domestic hot water as well. Nordic Heat Pumps are a good Canadian-made option.

Cold Climate Heat Pumps (Advanced Air Source) which absorb heat from ambient air down to approximately -30C. These units can be sized with or without back up heat to Nanaimo and surrounding areas winter design temperatures. These units utilize inverter technology and DC fans which are all very quiet. We really like the Japanese equipment  Mitsubishi Zuba Central and Zuba Multi as it was designed for Canada and the Mitsubishi P series units. Fujitsu also makes very efficient cold climate units. Bryant/Carrier GreenSpeed has full output to -8C and is another good North American manufacturer.

Air Source Heat Pumps that rely on a secondary heat source in freezing weather. These are the most common systems. This is very competitive with many good brands. We like the quiet units from Lennox, Bryant/Carrier, Rheem, Mitsubishi Electric, Fujitsu as well as many other major brands. Avoid brands you have never heard of, they most likely do not have a good support system in place in Canada.

The indoor unit options can fit any home or commercial building, these include:

  • Ducted System with Electric Air Handler
  • Ductless
  • Hydronic Heat Pump
  • Hot Water Tank Heat Pump
  • Ducted Dual Fuel Heat Pump and Natural Gas or Propane Furnace
  • VRF/VRV with a combination of ducted/ductless

Heat Pumps can work with other products to control humidity, air quality, and advanced programming and control.

The winner of The Best Heat Pump Is…..(drumroll!)

A custom, correctly sized solution for your home that is installed correctly!!!

*In our experience (very biased!) the Mitsubishi Electric Heat Pumps have been the best and most reliable brand for us.
This really is a biased opinion as there are other excellent brands but we have been installing them for decades (they came to Canada in 1979) and seen them outlast many of the competitors. They have units designed for Canada with the best cold climate performance. Please reach out to us and we can explain further details regarding heating performance, decibel ratings and why you can trust our family to do the job right!