The thought of installing both a furnace and heat pump can feel somewhat unusual at first. After all, why would you need two heaters? Even though furnaces and heat pumps both offer energy-efficient heat, the variations in their design really make using both of them a viable option. It’s not for all of us, but under the right conditions you could truly benefit from owning a furnace and a heat pump.
You’ll want to consider several factors in order to decide if this kind of setup helps you. Your local climate and the size of your home are both very important, particularly for the heat pump. This is because many models of heat pumps start to work less effectively in cooler weather and larger homes. At the same time, you can still benefit from heat pump installation in West Jefferson.
Heat Pumps Might Be Less Effective in Winter Weather
Heat pumps are commonly less efficient in cold weather as a result of how they generate climate control to start with. As opposed to furnaces, which combust fuel to generate heat, a heat pump reverses its flow of refrigerant to extract heat from outdoor air. This heat is then pulled inside and dispersed around your home. As long as there is still a bit of heat energy in the air, a heat pump can function. But the colder the temperature, the less reliable this process is.
The less heat energy is accessible outside, the more time is needed for a heat pump to pull heat indoors to generate your preferred temperature. It may depend on the type of make and model, but heat pumps can start to lose out on efficiency at temperatures of 40 degrees and colder. They can still be an energy-efficient option until 20-25 degrees, at which point a gas furnace will be more effective.
What Temperatures Do Heat Pumps Work Best In?
Heat pumps function best in moderate climates 40 degrees and up. That said, you don’t have to lose out on the benefits of a heat pump just because the local climate is cooler. As a matter of fact, that’s why installing both a furnace and heat pump may be worth the cost. You can keep the heat pump for energy-efficient heat until the weather is cool enough to justify switching to something like a gas furnace.
Certain makes and models tout greater effectiveness in cooler weather. For example, the Lennox MLA heat pump is capable of working at 100% capacity at 0°F. It can even continue running in temperatures as cold as -22°F. For maximum energy efficiency, you’ll likely still want to use the furnace in particularly cold weather.
So Should I Get a Heat Pump If I Own a Gas Furnace?
If you’re serious about maintaining the most energy-efficient HVAC system possible, having a heat pump and gas furnace at the same time warrants the investment. Not only is a dual-heating system versatile, but it offers other advantages such as:
- A source of backup heating – A redundant heating system means even if one fails, you still have the capability to heat your home. It won't always be the most energy efficient, but it’s better than shivering in an unheated home while you sit around for repairs
- Reduced energy costs – The ability to choose which heating system you use according to the highest energy efficiency reduces your total costs. Smaller heating bills over the life of these heaters can really add up to plenty of savings
- Less strain on both systems – Instead of running one system all winter long, heating resources are divided between the furnace and heat pump. Essential parts may live longer given that they’re not under continuous use.
If you’re still hesitant about heat pump installation in West Jefferson, don’t hesitate to get in touch with your local professional technicians. They can review your home’s comfort needs and help you figure out if a dual-heating HVAC system is the ideal option.