How to calculate coefficient of performance

Written by karl wallulis
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How to calculate coefficient of performance
The coefficient of performance measures the efficiency of a heat pump. (rohrleitung image by Falk from

The coefficent of performance (also known as COP) specifies the ratio between the energy transfer of a heating pump and the total input of electrical energy. COP is a dimensionless number that expresses the efficiency of a heating system -- a pump with a higher COP transfers more heat with an equivalent energy input. You can precisely calculate a heating pump's COP if you know the input energy and output heat. You can estimate the COP if you know the heat pump refrigerant's properties.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Calculate the heat output of the heating pump in BTUs per hour (a BTU is the amount of energy required to heat a pound of water 1 degree Fahrenheit and is equal to approximately 1.055 kilojoules).

  2. 2

    Divide the heat output by the total energy input of the heating pump in kilowatts (a kilowatt is equal to 1000 watts).

  3. 3

    Divide your result by the conversion constant of 3,413 to find the coefficient of performance of the pump.

  1. 1

    Add 460 to the temperature at which the refrigerant in the heating pump evaporates.

  2. 2

    Divide this number by the difference between the refrigerant's condensation and evaporation temperatures.

  3. 3

    Multiply this number by 0.6 to find the heating pump's approximate coefficient of performance.

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