The thought of running both a furnace and heat pump can feel a bit odd at first. After all, why do you need two heaters? Even though furnaces and heat pumps both offer energy-efficient heat, the differences in their design really make using both of them a reasonable option. It’s not for all of us, but under the right conditions you can truly benefit from owning a furnace and a heat pump.
You’ll need to consider several factors in order to determine if this sort of setup works for you. Your local climate and the size of your home are both especially important, especially for the heat pump. This is because multiple models of heat pumps will function less effectively in winter weather and larger homes. At the same time, you can still take advantage of heat pump installation in Cache Valley.
Heat Pumps Can Be Less Reliable in Cold Weather
Heat pumps are generally less effective in cooler weather as a result of how they provide climate control to start with. Unlike furnaces, which combust fuel to provide heat, a heat pump reverses its stream of refrigerant to draw heat from outdoor air. This heat is then drawn inside and circulated around your home. Provided there is still some heat energy in the air, a heat pump will function. But the lower the temperature, the less reliable this process is.
The less heat energy is usable outside, the more effort is required for a heat pump to draw heat indoors to reach your ideal temperature. It might depend on the exact make and model, but heat pumps can start to lose efficiency at temperatures of 40 degrees and below. They should still be an energy-efficient option until 20-25 degrees, at which a gas furnace is more effective.
What Temperatures Do Heat Pumps Work Best In?
Heat pumps manage best in milder climates 40 degrees and up. Having said that, you don’t have to give up on the benefits of a heat pump just because your local climate is cold. In fact, that’s why having both a furnace and heat pump may be worth the expense. You can use the heat pump for energy-efficient heat until the weather is cold enough to call for switching to something like a gas furnace.
Some makes and models boast greater efficiency in cooler weather. For example, the Lennox MLA heat pump is capable of running at 100% capacity at 0°F. It can even remain functional in temperatures as low as -22°F. For maximum energy efficiency, you’ll likely still want to switch to the furnace in especially cold weather.
So Should I Put in a Heat Pump if I Have a Gas Furnace?
If you’re interested in maintaining the most energy-efficient HVAC system achievable, owning a heat pump and gas furnace at the same time deserves the investment. Not only is a dual-heating system adaptable, but it features other benefits such as:
- Dependable backup heating – A redundant heating system means even if one stops working, you still have the means to heat your home. It may not be the most energy efficient, but it’s better than having an unheated home while you wait for repairs.
- Reduced energy costs – The ability to pick which heating system you use according to the highest energy efficiency decreases your total costs. Smaller heating bills over the lifetime of these heaters can really add up to a lot of savings.
- Less strain on both systems – Compared to running one system all winter long, heating duties are split between the furnace and heat pump. Key components can live longer since they’re not under continuous use.
If you’re still unsure about heat pump installation in Cache Valley, don’t hesitate to get in touch with your local expert technicians. They can review your home’s comfort needs and help you determine if a dual-heating HVAC system is the best option.