Upcoming Events

Dec 6 2022 Lecture /

TSA Technical Series: Making the Case for Heat Pumps

12:00 PM - 1:30 PM

Online via Zoom

$15+HST General Admission, Free for TSA Members using the discount code in the TSA Bulletin!

Register Here

How Heat Pumps Work | HowStuffWorks


In Ontario’s relatively green electric grid, heat pumps—electric powered devices that use small amounts of energy to move heat from one location to another—are one of THE key technologies to decarbonize Toronto homes to levels approaching the ambitious municipal and federal climate targets. However, while heat pumps are a mature technology that has been around for decades, they currently represent a very small market share in the city because of a key historical barrier: compared to conventional systems based on natural gas, heat pumps typically costed more to both purchase and operate. However, with current utility rate trends and government programs, the financial picture is rapidly changing. Heat pumps are emerging as an option that is not only green, but also cost-effective, and it is important for practitioners to stay up-to-date on the changing landscape. 

Join us and Erik Janssen of the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority’s Sustainable Technologies Evaluation Program (STEP) for a 1.5 hour primer on heat pumps for architects. Using data collected from local installations and pilot projects, Erik will de-mystify heat pumps and equip you with sufficient background knowledge to offer meaningful high-level guidance to clients when it comes to decisions around home heating and cooling systems.

After this session, participants should be able to:

  • Identify the main components of a heat pump and understand the basic physics behind them
  • Understand key terminology used in brochures and manufacturer spec sheets
  • Identify different types of heat pumps (including both all-electric and hybrid gas-electric options) and their use cases
  • Articulate the financial case for choosing a heat pump in the context of current policies and programs
  • Understand the achievable as-installed performance and factors impacting it
  • List common pitfalls and lessons learned from local installs
  • Locate helpful resources in navigating heat pump retrofits

Helpful Resources



About the Speaker

Erik Janssen is an Analyst with the Sustainable Technologies Evaluation Program (STEP) of the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA). For nearly a decade, he has been a scientific lead on data monitoring pilot projects evaluating the performance of emerging low-carbon technologies, with pilots conducted both in STEP’s Archetype Sustainable House Lab and in real-world homes and buildings. Prior to STEP, Erik worked for Ecologix Heating Technologies, a small-scale manufacturer of ground-source heat pumps and innovative cold-climate air-source heat pumps. He is a Certified Measurement and Verification Professional with the Association of Energy Engineers and holds a Master’s of Applied Science in Engineering Physics, a Swedish Magisterexamen in Solar Energy Engineering, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Physics. Erik and the STEP team have made it their mission to fill in the data gaps preventing broad-scale heat pump deployment, and to communicate heat pump benefits and pilot project learnings to decision-makers, homeowners, and industry practitioners. STEP’s portfolio of research is available at sustainabletechnologies.ca.


TSA MEMBERS: This event is free for TSA members using the discount code found in our Bulletin! Not a member yet? Membership is open to everyone and you can join here (student memberships are free!).

OAA MEMBERS: When registering, please include your full name as registered with the OAA to ensure your certificate of participation is credited properly. Please also include an email address you check frequently to ensure you receive our certificate in a timely manner.