Heat Pump Efficiency - Efficient Water Heaters Program |WePower

Energy Efficient Water Heaters

Heat pump water heaters look a lot like conventional electric water heaters but work differently. They take in warm air from the space where the water heater is located and use a compressor to transfer that heat to the water in the tank. That means they use less energy to do the same amount of work.

Instant discounts on high-efficiency heat pump water heater technologies are now available to equipment installers and are applied at the wholesaler or distributor point-of-purchase. Be sure to ask your contractor about these discounts.

Alternatively, if you are purchasing a heat pump water heater from a retail outlet, you may be eligible for a $500 rebate.

Keep reading to learn more.

Connect with an Energy Advisor to help you find ways to save energy and money.



Heat pump water heaters:

  • Are the most energy-efficient water heating systems on the market.
  • Save you energy and money—use 60% less energy and lower your utility bill (more than $150 average savings per year).
  • Provide you with programmable options such as “vacation mode,” which saves energy while you’re not at home and ensures that you have hot water when you return.
  • Help dehumidify damp spaces, such as your garage or basement, where they are often installed.

Is a new heat pump water heater right for you?

Use the Hot Water Solutions decision tool to find out.

  • Your new heat pump water heater should be located in a space with about 1,000 cubic ft. For example, in a basement with 7-foot ceilings, a water heater would need open floor space of roughly 10 by 14 feet around the unit.
  • For the most efficient operation, the air temperature where the water heater is installed should average 40 degrees Fahrenheit or above. Garages and unfinished (unconditioned) basements are ideal for heat pump water heaters.
  • Because the heat pump exhausts cool air in the area where it is located, the water heater should be installed in a location that would isolate cool air, or is ducted to the outside. Examples are in a garage or unheated/unfinished basement, attic or crawlspace.
  • Heat pump water heaters make about as much noise as an air conditioner. Consider this when making your purchase and placement decisions.

Two Ways to Save:

Seattle City Light offers two ways to receive $500 off the purchase of a qualified heat pump water heater:

  • Have your contractor manage the process. Contractors can receive an instant discount when purchasing a heat pump water heater through one of several participating wholesalers and distributors in the Seattle area. Units with a Unified Energy Factor of 3.0 or better will receive an instant discount on units installed in a building served by City Light up to $500 each. This instant discount is applied at point-of-purchase to the contractor’s invoice, so be sure to let your contractor know you want them to select a unit that qualifies for the instant discount!


  • Do-it-yourself and apply for a rebate. City Light customers who replace an existing electric water heater with a qualified heat pump water heater model purchased from a home improvement retailer can apply for a $500 rebate. Review the eligibility requirements on our rebate form for details.

You may qualify for a low interest loan with convenient payment plans that can be paid on your utility bill.

Visit our lending partners’ websites below or contact an Energy Advisor to learn more: