Videos & Media
Don't take our word for it - check out HeatSmart Newton in the media!
JAN 14, 2021
Heat pump water heater interview
Hear from one of your Newton neighbors who recently had a Heat Pump Water Heater installed in his home.
Jan 8, 2021
Green Newton Article
Heat Pumps are for Water Heaters Too
By Craig Forman
The City of Newton has been promoting the HeatSmart program, facilitating the move to electric heat pump technology. Most of the focus to date has been on heating and cooling, but heat pumps also work great for hot water. Heat pump water heaters can replace direct or indirect water heaters, and run quite efficiently without burning any fossil fuels. HeatSmart Newton recently chatted with Newton resident Peter McPhee to discuss the heat pump water heater that was recently installed in his home. You can watch a video of the entire 30-minute interview, and can view a fact sheet on heat pump water heaters.
Peter formerly had an indirect water heater that was tied to his heating system, a steam boiler fired by heating oil. This means that the oil burner would kick on any time the system called for hot water heating. He wanted to start the process of moving away from fossil fuels, and his old water heater was failing. With the help of information on the HeatSmart Newton website, he decided to install a heat pump water heater. Some electrical work was done to upgrade the service in his home from 100 Amps to 200 Amps, and an auxiliary breaker box was added to handle additional circuits. He will eventually use this for other projects like an EV charger and a heat pump heating/cooling system.
The unit he installed was a Rheem ProTerra 80 gallon heat pump water heater. This is a larger tank than many families would need, but Peter has two kids at home and wanted to make sure that there was always enough hot water. There is a $600 rebate available from MassSave for heat pump water heaters of <55 gallons if replacing an electric or oil fired water heater. Peter was unable to use the rebate because the size was over 55 gallons. He used his local plumber to do the install, and he thought the installation was no more complicated than installing a conventional water heater. The only difference is that a condensate pump usually needs to be added. Peter purchased one himself on Amazon for less than $50.
Peter is an engineer at heart, and really enjoys the mobile app that allows you to monitor the water heater on your smartphone (these heaters have WiFi built in). Not everyone will do this, but Peter finds it useful to look at the daily graphs of energy usage that are provided by the app, which allows him to see how much energy is used taking showers, doing laundry, etc. It also helps him to find the water heater settings that help him get maximum performance and efficiency.
He has an unfinished basement, with an old steam boiler that unfortunately keeps the basement quite warm all year round. The water heater actually uses this wasted heat to save energy on heating hot water. This is an ideal situation for a heat pump water heater. Peter says that the noise level from the new water heater is much less than the noise from the old furnace. The only added maintenance is that he will rinse out the removeable air filter every month or two. But he no longer has to think about oil deliveries in the months when he is not heating his house. He also is trying to decide whether he can disconnect his dehumidifier, because heat pump water heaters do a very good job of dehumidification. He is really happy he made this decision and plans to move forward with more electrification projects in the coming years.
NOV 12, 2020
Heatsmart Newton Video
Check out this short video created by one of the amazing Green Newton interns about the HeatSmart Newton program!
OCT 21, 2020
Green Newton E-Newsletter
HeatSmart Newton helps resident replace obsolete heating system
Chris Love, a new homeowner in Nonantum, recently undertook a retrofit of his home’s heating system with the help of HeatSmart Newton and their partner installer, New England Ductless. When Love purchased the home (believed to be a teardown candidate) in July, it had an old non-functional oil heating system that was beyond repair. The only working heat was a few electric baseboard units and there was no air conditioning. Love lives there with his wife and their 3-year old child, and at the time of this interview, they were expecting a second child.
“It was urgent for us to get a new heating system,” said Love. “Converting the old oil heating system to natural gas required running a gas line into the basement and we still needed air conditioning.” Love had purchased window AC units for the summer but found them expensive to operate. Worried about the project’s complexity, he was thrilled to find HeatSmart Newton through Mayor Fuller’s e-newsletter. “I browsed the website, watched the video interviews, and reached out to the HeatSmart coach to learn about heat pump technology. We didn’t realize we had these options. The ease of installation and the ability to both heat and cool with one system made it difficult to justify any new fossil fuel based system. With this system, we will have a greatly reduced carbon footprint and will no longer rely on fossil fuels. In fact, we will use gas only for cooking.”
Love chose to install a ductless heat pump system with two outdoor compressors and five indoor heads (called “mini-splits”) to heat and cool the entire two-story house. “We were both surprised by how discrete the indoor units are; not overly large or obtrusive,” he says. “My wife was really excited about getting central cooling after a hot summer. New England Ductless made it easy for us to get the project going and expects to complete it before the baby arrives. They even helped arrange to remove the old oil tank from the basement. “ Love is getting a no-cost MassSave energy assessment and plans to add insulation.
HeatSmart Newton plans to help many more residents improve comfort and reduce carbon emissions through heat pump installations. To find out more about this program, which runs through the end of the year, visit http://wepowr.com/HeatSmartNewton or email us at HeatSmartNewton@gmail.com.
Sep 28, 2020
One of the first air-source heat pumps has been installed through the HeatSmart Newton program. Area resident Tim Tippett was gracious enough to share his experience with HeatSmart Newton.
"... I would not have done this if it were not for the HeatSmart program. The support has been fantastic and the peace of mind in knowing that the hard work of vetting suppliers has been done means that I know I am in great hands. I view this as one of the greatest benefits I have recieved from my nearly 30 years in Newton." - Tim Tippett.
Read more of Tim's story on Wicked Local Newton
JUL 29, 2020
Mayor Fuller's Update
Newton Mayor Ruthanne Fuller has been a strong proponent of the city's HeatSmart program. Below is an exerpt from her July 29th newsletter:
Summer is a great time to install heat pumps. Despite being called “heat” pumps, they provide air conditioning as well as heating. They are efficient and quiet. They can replace natural gas and heating oil, thereby reducing the greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change. The Heat Smart Newton program is a collaboration of the City of Newton; Green Newton; Newton Mothers Out Front; and 350 Mass, Newton Node; its funded by a grant from the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center. The program has now selected its two vetted suppliers, New England Ductless and Muirfield Mechanical. Get more information at the Heat Smart Newton website here.
Jul 29, 2020
Meet the installers webinar for heat pump technology
"We are excited that we can finally introduce our vetted suppliers, New England Ductless and Muirfield Mechanical. This is an opportunity for you to begin receiving free site assessments and quotes for your heat pump projects" said Craig Forman, HeatSmart Coach. "Our team spent many hours vetting the installers, to make sure customers get the best quality equipment and the most knowledgeable installers, along with transparent group pricing." Check out the full webinar below.
For more information, email HeatSmartNewton@gmail.com
June 15, 2020
WEBinar: Community Experience with Heat Pumps
Memebers of the Newton community already have heat pumps installed in their home. Hear from your neighbors about their experience and the real-world realities and benefits of using heat pumps in your home.
MAY 27, 2020
In the news: City of Newton receives HeatSmart Mass 2020 Grant
The HeatSmart Newton program was recently featured in Wicked Local Newton!
From the article: "The city of Newton has been selected to participate in the 2020 HeatSmart Mass program, a community-based education and group purchasing program that accelerates the adoption of clean energy technologies. Local nonprofits and community groups such as Green Newton, Newton Mothers Out Front and 350 Mass, Newton Node are behind this initiative."
Read more at Wicked Local Newton
May 5, 2020
ASHP Testimonial: Newton resident Demie Stathoplos
Newton resident Demie Stathoplos talks about her experience adding air-source heat pumps to her family’s home.
APRIL 27, 2020
Webinar: Heat Pump Technology for home Heating, Cooling, and Hot Water
On April 27, the HeatSmart Newton Team hosted a virtual "Library Chat" discussing the application of Heat Pump technology in homes for space heating, cooling and hot water. View the recording of the webinar on zoom below.
April 23, 2020
Newton Launches HeatSmart Campaign:
The City of Newton has been selected to participate in the 2020 HeatSmart Mass program. HeatSmart Mass is a community-based education and group purchasing program that accelerates the adoption of clean energy technologies. The programs is operated by the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC) in partnership with the Department of Energy Resources (DOER) and powered by local volunteers and municipal officials. In Newton, the campaign is being coordinated by a team of volunteers from Green Newton, Newton Mothers Out Front, and the Newton Node of 350 Mass, and by Ann Berwick, the City’s Co-Director of Sustainability. The City of Newton will promote air-source heat pumps for space heating and cooling, as well as heat pump water heaters.
HeatSmart Mass was launched in 2018, modeled after Solarize Mass, with a focus on promoting residential and small scale commercial clean heating and cooling. Energy used for heating contributes to over a quarter of the Commonwealth’s greenhouse gas emissions. In the average Massachusetts home, 75% of the energy used is for space and water heating. Since its launch in 2018, 13 cities and towns have participated in HeatSmart Mass resulting in 425 clean heating and cooling systems to date.