18 May 2017
The U.S. Heat Pump (HP) and Air Conditioning (AC) market is impacted by shifts in population patterns, fuel prices, housing characteristics, consumer preferences, regulatory and economic conditions – all catalyzed by rapid technological innovation and deployment efforts. This paper evaluates impacts of these factors on current HP and AC market trends and future outlook. Particular attention is paid to the major housing market crisis, which resulted in total HP and AC shipments falling from 8.6 million units in 2005 to 5 million units in 2010. It has recovered to reach almost 7 million shipments in 2015. HP and AC shipments in 2015 are now respectively 6% higher and 30% lower relative to 2005. Also, the new 2015 DOE minimum efficiency regulations had a significant impact on shipment trends. For instance, new split-system HPs must now have a minimum Seasonal Coefficient of Performance for cooling (SCOPc) of 4.1 and a minimum SCOP for heating (SCOPh) of 2.4 (compared to the previous 3.8 SCOPc and 2.25 SCOPh). The last quarter of 2014 showed historically high HP shipment growth of 18% relative to 2013, largely due to manufacturers shipping inventory before the enforcement of the new regulation. Finally, HPs are gaining market share outside of the South. 8-20% of new single-family homes outside the southern U.S. are using HPs. Research and deployment efforts by DOE, National Laboratories, Northeast Energy Efficiency Partnership (NEEP) among others shows promising future for HP technologies throughout the U.S.