If you’re considering buying a new Florida home, a certain mechanical system could sway your choice of home builders. It’s a hybrid water heater — also known as a heat pump water heater — and it can trim your power bill. What makes a hybrid water heater special? It utilizes heat in the air, rather than nonstop mega-kilowatts of electricity, to produce on-demand hot water. For the non-mechanical among us, a hybrid water heater transfers heat from the air to the water.

It’s a process. But it’s also at least twice as efficient as a standard electric water heater — some estimates cite 60 percent less energy usage — and those savings can add up over years of home ownership. Allow us to explain.Energy efficiency

How a Hybrid Water Heater Works

It looks like a standard electric water heater. It performs the same function. But that’s where similarities end. The heat-pump portion of a hybrid water heater sits on top of its tank. It uses a fan to induct air through a filter. Refrigerant in the water heater’s evaporator coil absorbs heat from the inducted air. That refrigerant is pumped through a compressor, which further raises it temperature. Heated refrigerant circulates through the tank’s copper coil and transfers heat to water. Voila — an extremely efficient method to heat water. Plus, it’s easy to install.

It Works! Real-Life Proof

Not long ago, an ICI Homes customer bought a Juliette floor plan in the Water’s Edge community of Port Orange, Florida. The customer’s new home contained a hybrid water heater. She says her monthly power bill amount has never exceeded that of her monthly water bill — and she even shared her power bill with us to back up her claim! Which leads us to…

Buy An EQ Factor Home from ICI Homes

EQ Factor homes are “energy-wise and quality-built.” In fact, a hybrid water heater is one of 10 energy-wise features exclusive to ICI Homes’ EQ Factor construction. The other eight features are HERS RESNET certification, a tighter building envelope, 15-SEER HVAC systems, high-performance windows and glass doors, Energy Star appliances, programable thermostats, earth-friendly carpet and paint, water-conserving fixtures and compact fluorescent lighting.

Since you asked, here are the 10 quality-built features of an ICI Homes EQ Factor home: more wood behind the walls, a solid-built foundation, added water intrusion protection, stronger stucco application, superior window installation, quality exterior door construction, high- performance sub-flooring, proactive customer care, better-build balconies and decks and top-rated partners.

Ready to find your EQ Factor Home? ICI Homes is waiting. Click here to begin.