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As our climate keeps on evolving, British Columbians are looking for new ways to manage extreme weather conditions at home. As a result, we continue to see a surge in the installation of heat pump technology.

Heat pumps are capable of providing year-round comfort control for your home by supplying heat in the winter and cooling in the summer without the need for large consumption of energy. To ensure the safe installation, operation, and maintenance of heat pumps in British Columbia, we put together four helpful reminders.

  1. Provincially regulated heat pumps are subject to the Power Engineers, Boiler, Pressure Vessel and Refrigeration Safety Regulation.

  2. When installing, repairing, altering, or maintaining provincially regulated heat pump systems, make sure you or whoever is performing the work has the appropriate licences and qualifications. To work on heat pumps, you are required to hold or be employed by someone who holds a valid class REF contractor's licence.

  3. Heat pump installation requires a refrigeration installation permit. You can apply for this permit through our Online Services account.

  4. Know the requirements for your area. Make sure to check with your local building inspection department for any additional requirements. Some local governments have introduced their own permitting and training guidelines.

Some heat pump systems are exempt from the Power Engineers, Boiler, Pressure Vessel and Refrigeration Safety Regulation including, heat pumps with a total prime mover kW rating of less than 5 kW, heat pumps that do not contain toxic or flammable contents and are installed in a building containing four or fewer self-contained residential units, and heat pumps installed in a vehicle, ship, or train.

When performing electrical work on heat pumps, it’s important to check the Electrical Safety Regulation to ensure compliance with any licensing and permitting requirements.

If you are still unsure about working with heat pump systems or have any technical questions, please contact us.