Mike Cappuccio, founder of NETR, Inc, talks with John Maher about what’s happening with heat pumps in 2022. He talks about increased efficiency and expanded capabilities. Then, he explains why you should order now if you want to have a heat pump installed.
John Maher: Hi, I’m John Marher. I’m here today with Mike Cappuccio, founder of N.E.T.R., Inc., a heating and cooling company in Massachusetts with a focus on Mitsubishi ductless heating and cooling products. Today, we’re talking about Mitsubishi ductless heat pumps in 2022. Welcome Mike.
Mike Cappuccio: Good morning, John. How are you?
New Ductless Heating and AC Products in 2022
John: Good, thanks. So, Mike, are there any new ductless heating and air conditioning products that are available now for installation in 2022?
Mike: Well, yes, there is John. The products are, they’re coming in. As we know, they’re still a little bit scarce. We’re seeing product problems now as we run into 2022, but there are definitely new products coming out for 2022 that we’re going to be working with.
Obviously Mitsubishi is trying to always better their product line and by doing that, I mean, it’s always working and striving towards heating at the lower temperatures and efficiency, always getting higher with the SEER ratings, EERs, the HSSPs and always trying to make the product better.
But the big, big focus I’m seeing is making products now that heat at lower temperatures than five degrees. There are some products available now that are heating at minus 13 degrees Fahrenheit, where before there was a five degree barrier where you could only get the full capacity out of the system at five degrees. So now I think everything you’re going to start to see, even with the multi zone equipment, is going to start trying to achieve that minus 13 Fahrenheit.
Because I mean, with everything now turning to electrification, I mean, everywhere we turn today, we’re looking at electrification of what’s going on with electric cars, and solar, and zero carbon footprints and everything that we’re working towards. We’re going to need heat pumps that heat at these low temperatures and stop using backup electric heat in the areas where we do get those minus 15 degree temperatures. I know that is on the horizon and there are products available and there are going to be a lot more to come in 2022.
Important Recent Advancements in Ductless Technology
John: Right. Any other sort of important advancements in ductless technology and products in the last few years that you want to talk about?
Mike: Like I said, I mean, when you look back 10 years ago, I mean, heat pumps really didn’t. They were giving you full capacity at maybe 40 degrees, 35 degrees, and now, we’re seeing mostly everything gives you full capacity at five degrees with the hyper heat systems, but you’re going to be seeing more products that are definitely going to get down to that minus 13.
New Ductless Products for 2022
John: Okay. And do you anticipate any new products for ductless systems that will be introduced in 2022?
Mike: Yeah, like I was saying, I think we’re going to start to see more multi zones that heat at lower temperatures. I think we’re going to also see the bigger units. I mean, now we’re getting into the 60,000 BTU units that we’re going to start to probably see heating at minus five. That really is going to have to be a game player in the market because where we have 60,000, 80,000 BTU furnaces in homes, if we’re going to go and move to this full electrification of which we are going towards right now, we’re going to need bigger equipment that heats at the low temperatures. So I think we’re going to start to see that coming out too.
We’ve also seen the ceiling recessed units that are going in rooms now versus wall mount units. We’re definitely using more and more ducted units where we’re using the horizontal air handlers of the attic of a home and basically handling the whole upstairs of a home with ductwork and maybe taking a furnace out of an attic and replacing that with a heat pump. Also when we’re adding central air to a home, we’re adding that heat pump in the attic too to heat those upstairs rooms. So a lot of the combinations, what we’re seeing of homes now with the new technology is a ducted unit in the attic and maybe two wall mount units downstairs in a home that heat at those low temperatures.
Why You Need High BTUs to Heat Some Areas
John: And is that where those higher BTU units, like you said, the 60,000 BTUs or 80,000 BTUs where those really come into play, because now you’re using one of those units to heat like an entire upstairs floor of a house. And so you need those higher BTUs.
Mike: And sometimes a whole entire home John. We really need that from a whole entire home. I mean, I’ve seen this year where I haven’t seen in past years where we’re selling a lot of 60,000 BTU systems for whole home solutions where it was usually a 48,000 BTU unit. So now we’re seeing a lot more of the 60,000 BTU units being installed. But once we can get that 60,000 BTU unit to heat at an extremely low temperature, that’s going to be a big game changer in the industry. And you’re going to see that come. I mean, they’re striving towards that. They’re definitely striving towards doing that.
I mean, we’re also seeing some of the new products now too where you might have a furnace in a home where they’re trying to do hybrid systems, where you had a central air conditioning system with an A coil sitting on top of your furnace that was your central air conditioning system. And I know Mitsubishi is highly working on an A coil that is going to go on top of a furnace and you’ll use a ductless unit outside. So you’ll have a heat pump and your furnace together where your furnace will be used at low temperatures, the zero and below to heat your home, but the heat pump will be heating your home from an electrification standpoint. Those are coming very soon.
Single Unit Versus Multiple Units With Lower BTUs
John: Is it more efficient to have one single outdoor unit like a 60,000 or 80,000 BTU unit that’s handling the whole home or to have multiple units of a smaller BTU that are maybe handling maybe an upstairs and a downstairs or something like that? What’s the most efficient way?
Mike: I think it really all depends on how the house lays out and what you’re trying to accomplish there. I mean, most times it is more efficient to heat with one unit than it is with several units just because of the electric feeds that go outside. But on the other side of that scenario, you do have two systems. In case one system does go down, you have a system where you could go to your part of your home, where you would have warmth at that point too.
It’s almost like one furnace, one furnace goes off, you have no heat. If you have two furnaces, you have heat in the other parts of your home. So, I mean, it really depends on how the house lays out and where we have to run the piping from the branch boxes or from the indoor unit. What are the lengths? We only have 82 feet from either a branch box to an indoor unit or from an outdoor unit to an indoor head with a system that does not use a branch box. So it really depends. Every case is different on that point.
Is Now a Good Time to Install Ductless Heating and Cooling?
John: Right. Right. So is now a good time to install a ductless heating and air conditioning system in your home?
Mike: Now is definitely a good time to install a ductless heating and air conditioning system in your home because I’m telling you what’s going to happen, I mean, we’re in December right now doing this podcast today, a little before Christmas and I’m hearing in 2022, there are going to be some major changes with the Mass Save program.
I’ve been on some calls and some meetings over the past two weeks of what’s going to be happening in 2022. It’s pretty much a done deal from what I’m hearing. Nothing has been put in writing yet. But with the new electrification in Massachusetts, they want to install heat pumps in homes, and now is a great time to do it because number one, the first thing is we’re seeing product shortages. So what we’re doing right now is we’re trying to secure jobs for the springtime.
And I hate to say it, but people are putting in orders now. And we’re securing equipment in the distribution points, which we are having a little bit of trouble with right now. So if someone is looking to get a heat pump installed in late winter or early spring, now is the time to do it. You’re going to secure your price too… there are going to be big price increases come March of next year. We all know what’s happening with everything that’s going on in the world today with COVID, and product shortages, and price increases, and that is going to come. So that’s number one, product shortages and price increases.
And number two, with these Mass Save rebates for electrification in your home. I know that some of the smaller rebates are going away. The rebates where you really weren’t adding an integrated control into your home, and you were maybe getting a $250 to maybe $500 rebate on a system.
Those are all going to be moving to $1,250 per 12,000 BTUs with an integrated control added. So some of those rebates are going to stay the same, but you are going to have to add integrated controls into those now, because that’s what we call a partial heating system for a home. So below 30 degrees, you’re going to use your heat pump to heat, oh, I’m sorry, above 30 degrees you’re going to use your heat pump to heat your home and below 30 degrees, you’re going to use the fossil fuel to heat your home.
Now, the big change for 2022 is going to be a whole home solution where you actually remove the fossil fuel from the home. There’s going to be upwards of $10,000 in rebates for a whole home solution to do that when you remove your heating system from your home.
So this has been going on in New York for a while now. I know this has been a big, big push in New York with certain parts of New York where there’s… in the Hudson Valley, I’ve heard now that there’s spots where you can’t put in gas into a home. So, with all these changes, you’re seeing bigger rebates are going to be coming out for next year. But with those rebates, you are going to be asked to remove your fossil fuel from your home. Example, if you have oil in your home, the oil tank is going to need to be removed. If you have a furnace in your home and it’s gas or a boiler in your home and it’s gas, they’re going to ask to remove these pieces of equipment or cut them and cap them off so they’re not usable in the home at that point. But I mean, I don’t know.
The other thing too, is what I’m seeing in 2022, well, I’m even seeing it now, like I have gas in my home and I’ve seen my gas bill. The cost of natural gas has gone up significantly, significantly. And you’re going to start to see in 2022 that heating your home with a heat pump is going to be more efficient than heating with gas whereas before it was pretty much an equal sometimes. That 20 degrees, 30 degrees, it costs about the same cost per million BTU. You’re going to see that now be less money because of the cost of natural gas that is rising. And as we all know, the cost of oil has gone up too. I mean, the day and age of home heating oil being $2 a gallon is not $2 a gallon anymore. It’s gone up to well over $3 to 3.50 per gallon for home heating oil.
And I personally think that’s going to surge even more as we get into the winter time. So now is a fantastic time to add a heat pump to your home. And the other thing you got to think about too is look, if you don’t have a home with air conditioning and you’re using this to heat your home, you’re getting the air conditioning as the luxury side of that too. So if you’re using window units or whatever, or however you’re air conditioning your home, you’re going to have a nice whole home solution, year round, full comfort, nice temperature, good humidity levels. And it’s going to be a very, very comfortable home. Everything is moving to the whole home solution. The day and age of using a heat pump for spot cooling or spot heating in a home is, that’s a very, very rare installation that we do today. Mostly everything we’re doing is 100% of the home.
Rebates for Installing Efficient Heating Systems
John: Right. And that’s with those rebates you’re saying. They’re no longer doing the rebates for just spot heating in the home.
Mike: Well, that’s moving away. Everything is going for an integrated control now where they want you to integrate it with the system. And the other thing I want to mention in the podcast is, I mean, we’re taking deposits now for installations in April, and we’re basically taking a very small deposit on a job. We’re securing the jobs because our hardest part that we’re having right now is securing equipment for the jobs, product availability. We’ve just brought in a good amount of product that we did buy from distribution. Because I mean, we’re seeing product shortages like everybody else is.
I’m not going to sit here and lie on the podcast and tell you that we’re not. But the good thing is if this is something that you’re really seriously considering doing, we want to get you into the pipeline now for April, get it locked up, and secure the equipment. We’ll hold onto it because we know the job is going to be installed in April.
And I mean, if you’ve got last year pricing, I can save those prices. I can lock in those prices. Buy the equipment now, get it in. We’ll store it for two months, three months, whatever we need to do. And we’ll come install that in March or April. Look, if we have a nice winter this winter and it’s mild, we’ll be doing a ton of installations in the month of, end of March. And like everyone else sees too, you try and get air conditioning installed in June and July and I mean, I know last summer we were out six to eight weeks at points and times whether it was product shortages, COVID related, guys out sick on the COVID bed, and lack of installation, lack of help. I mean, we hear every time we turn around on the news today that there is lack of people that can work and we’re seeing it. The shortage of employees and we can only do so much work in a week. So I’m just saying today, think smart, think early, save money. Let’s go green. Let’s get these systems installed in your home and let’s all be happy.
Contact NETR to Talk About Installing a Heat Pump Today
John: All right. Well, that’s great advice. Great information. Mike, thanks again for speaking with me today.
Mike: John, thanks and have a great holiday.
John: You too. And for more information, visit the N.E.T.R. website at netrinc.com or call (781) 933-NETR. That’s (781) 933-6387.