What are the heat pump requirements for the Home Renovation Rebate and EfficiencyBC Program?
Requirements for installing a heat pump vary depending on your electricity provider (BC Hydro or FortisBC), your primary heating fuel before the upgrade, the type of heat pump you want to install (mini-split or central system), and the efficiency ratings of the system.
Only air-source heat pumps are eligible for rebates. Geoexchange (ground-source) heat pumps are not eligible.
General heat pump requirements:
- Replacing or upgrading an existing heat pump is not eligible for a rebate.
- If the home is currently heated with electricity, the heat pump must replace a hard-wired electric heating system such as baseboards, radiant ceiling, radiant floors or forced air furnace. However these systems do not need to be removed.
- If the home is currently heated with oil, all oil heating equipment must be removed or decommissioned according to all relevant regulations and bylaws.
- If the home is currently heated with natural gas, all gas heating equipment must be removed, decommissioned, or modified according to all relevant regulations and bylaws. For variable speed central system (Tier 2), an existing natural gas furnace air handler may be re-used if its model number is included on the AHRI certificate for the new system. For more information and additional requirements, please see the FAQ “Am I eligible for a heat pump rebate if it is combined with a gas, propane, or oil furnace as backup?”
- See program terms and conditions for additional requirements.
Note: the EfficiencyBC program requirements posted on September 28, 2018 included a requirement for CSA F280-12 load calculations in order to qualify for a rebate. While EfficiencyBC strongly recommends load calculations be completed for all heat pump installations, this requirements has been removed for the present time for all heat pump installations, except for air-source heat pump installations that are combined with a natural gas or propane furnace as backup. Please see below for the revised load calculation requirements for combination systems. For more information, check out our FAQ, “What are the load calculation requirements for heat pumps?”
The heat pump you install must have a valid AHRI number to be eligible for rebates. An AHRI number refers to the efficiency ratings of both the indoor and outdoor units you choose, and is specific to that pairing. If the indoor or outdoor units change, the system will have a new AHRI number.
Confirm your heat pump has a valid AHRI number and the efficiency ratings of your heat pump are eligible before you have your system installed. Ask your contractor to provide the AHRI number and/or AHRI certificate with your invoice or receipt, as you will also need to include the AHRI number on your application form. AHRI numbers can be found on the AHRI Certification Directory.
||Minimum Efficiency Ratings
(by primary heating fuel before upgrade)
from BC Hydro
(oil, propane or natural gas)
|Mini Split (single head installation)
|Multi Split (multiple head installation)
|Central System (Tier 1)
|Central System (Tier 2)
The indoor unit (head) of a mini-split system must heat a main living area in the home (the living room or kitchen, for example). Single heads installed in a bedroom are not eligible. For multi-split systems (systems with more than one head), at least one head must heat a main living area.
A variable speed compressor is required for all mini-split, multi-split and Tier 2 central systems.
Only homes heated by electricity provided by FortisBC are eligible for the Tier 1 central system rebate. A variable speed compressor is not required.
In many cases, heat pumps are not eligible for a rebate if they are paired with a fossil fuel furnace. Please see the FAQ, “Am I eligible for a heat pump rebate if it is combined with a gas, propane, or oil furnace as backup?“