All-Electric HVAC Homes
If you’re considering an all-electric home, you’re likely motivated in part by environmental concerns. You want to reduce your carbon footprint through electrification and help mitigate climate change, especially as the grid gets greener. Perhaps you’re aware of how researchers are quantifying the financial and public health impacts of burning fossil fuels and feel compelled to rid your home of gas-powered appliances. Altruistic motivations are worthwhile, but an all-electric home can also improve your quality of life.
Going all-electric with your home is easier than it may seem. Products for electrifying residential space heating, water heating and cooking are readily available and eliminate gas metering and hookup costs. Compared to typical gas-powered options, modern all-electric systems and appliances can deliver superior experiences while making your home healthier, more efficient and comfortable. Take induction cooktops as an increasingly popular example. Cooking with gas releases pollutants like nitrogen dioxide and carbon monoxide into your kitchen and home. An induction cooktop, in comparison, uses electromagnetic currents to directly heat pots, pans and food without losing heat energy to the air or surrounding parts of the cooktop. You can breathe easier as this innovative use of magnets reduces indoor pollution, increases energy efficiency and enables you to heat food faster than gas ranges. Induction cooktops, convection ovens and electric fireplaces are great ways to start eliminating on-site combustion, but heat pumps are the most significant technology you’ll want for maximizing comfort and efficiency in an all-electric home. Modern high-performance, cold-climate heat pumps provide reliable, zero-emission space heating even in northern climates!
All-electric heat pumps and zoning
In an all-electric home, Mitsubishi Electric’s mini- and multi-split heat pumps provide space heating by moving outdoor heat energy indoors using refrigerant. This method enables the heat pump to provide more energy as heat than it consumes in electricity and requires no fossil fuels. During hot weather, the system reverses the process and transfers indoor heat to the outdoors to provide air conditioning. Boilers and furnaces produce carbon emissions as they burn fossil fuels to generate heat and they can’t cool your home. With a Mitsubishi Electric heat pump, you can reduce your carbon footprint and combine heating and air conditioning into one all-electric system.
As part of our Zoned Comfort Solutions®, mini- and multi-split heat pumps empower you to customize comfort throughout your home. Our systems consist of intuitive smart controls and an outdoor unit connected to one or more indoor units. Indoor units can be ducted or ductless. Ducted options include horizontal-ducted indoor units and multi-position air handlers, which can serve entire floors replacing gas furnaces or boilers. Ductless options include ceiling cassettes, wall-mounted units and floor-mounted models. Your contractor help design comfort zones in your home and each zone will have an individually controlled indoor unit. The outdoor unit’s INVERTER-driven compressor varies the system’s capacity to precisely maintain your preferred temperature for each zone while using minimal energy. This makes for smart comfort where your bedrooms, kitchen, home office, media room, exercise room have set points based on how you use each room. Also, if you have a room you use infrequently, you can save money and energy by turning off conditioning for its zone.
What about electricity bills?
Due to greater precision and energy efficiency, all-electric technologies increase predictability and control over electricity bills while getting rid of separate gas metering. Also, in new construction, starting with an all-electric home eliminates infrastructure costs for gas hookups. It’s possible to enjoy an electrified home without paying an electricity bill or with bills so low they’re almost nominal.
To construct net-zero or zero-energy-ready homes, builders reduce loads and the demand on mechanical systems through continuous insulation, air sealing and high-performance construction methods and then install solar panels to power the home’s energy-efficient, all-electric systems. This may increase upfront costs by 5 to 10 percent compared to similarly sized code-built homes, but the increase in the mortgage can be dwarfed by the money saved on energy costs.
Case in Point
The 1,863-square-foot, two-story home owned by Mark Kuntz, chief executive officer, Mitsubishi Electric Trane HVAC US (METUS) provides an example. Kuntz decided to build a zero-energy-ready, all-electric home with solar panels to offset his family’s energy usage after purchasing an 11-acre property in Monroe, Georgia.
The project team constructed an airtight, continuous thermal envelope and then performed room-by-room heating and air conditioning load calculations to ensure proper sizing for the energy-efficient mechanical systems. The Zoned Comfort Solutions installed at the Kuntz residence include three MSZ-FH Wall-mounted Indoor Units and one PEAD Horizontal-ducted Indoor Unit to condition the first level of the home. Mitsubishi Electric’s mobile app and web service, kumo cloud®, enables Kuntz and his family to control the comfort of the home from their smart devices.
Homes with a HERS index score of 100 typically meet code, and lower scores indicate greater energy efficiency. 58 was the average score for a HERS-rated home in 2020, but the all-electric Kuntz home (built in 2018) achieved a confirmed score of -13 per Home Performance Solutions, a third-party green verifier. The home also earned DOE Zero Energy Ready Home, ENERGY STAR®, EPA Indoor airPLUS and EarthCraft™ certifications and exceeds the 2009 and 2012 International Energy Conservation Code® (IECC). With the solar panels, Kuntz’s projected energy costs per year total $120. That’s an annual savings of $2,837 compared to the average new home.
Everyone deserves the healthy and comfortable home environment all-electric residences can provide. When you’re ready to electrify your heating and air conditioning, contact a Diamond Contractor and trust Mitsubishi Electric to support you.