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Carrier's New Inverter-Driven Heat Pump

Created 6/22/2011 by Jack Zeiger
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Apparently Carrier is just about to introduce, on July 1, a new residential heat pump, the “25VNA Infinity® 20”   (http://www.catalog.residential.carrier.com/wcs/proddesc_display/0,,...). It is Carrier's first residential heat pump with a variable speed ("inverter-driven") compressor. In fact, it's the first variable-speed residential heat pump by any American mfr. It is a drop-in replacement for a standard ducted heat pump, with a full indoor air handler, employing a variable-speed compressor. It’s rated at 18 - 20 SEER/12 - 13 HSPF. Note that it is particularly efficient in heating, which makes it ideal for the NW.   All the Asian heat pump manufacturers have had variable-speed compressors for years, so what's so different about this? It seems the main difference is that it is made to look and act like a standard single-zone heat pump, with a single indoor air handler, with ducting throughout the house. The Asian mfrs. mostly are concentrating on the ductless models. If you need more than one indoor unit, you can get multiple zones -- up to 8, and they can be ducted, but they have mostly gotten away from the idea of a single air handler for the whole house, though Daikin has a model that has been out for a year or so called the SkyAir Inverter Ducted model, that serves this same purpose as the Carrier model.   One advantage of these "one-to-one" ducted systems (a single indoor unit to one outdoor unit) is that they can easily be used for a retrofit or replacement situation where ducting is already in place.   But for new construction, here's the question: Why do we even want to go back to the old idea of putting your entire home on a single zone, and inviting duct leakage throughout the home? Do you really want your bedrooms heated exactly the same way as your living room?
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Sector: Residential
Function: Emerging Technology
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