The idea of running both a furnace and heat pump might seem somewhat odd at first. After all, why should you need two sources of heat? While furnaces and heat pumps both offer energy-efficient heat, the differences in their design genuinely make employing both of them a worthwhile option. It’s not for everyone, but in the right conditions you can absolutely benefit from using a furnace and a heat pump.
You’ll want to weigh several factors in order to decide if this kind of setup works for you. Your local climate and the dimensions of your home are both highly important, especially for the heat pump. This is because some models of heat pumps will function less effectively in winter weather and larger homes. That being said, you can still reap the benefits of heat pump installation in Belton.
Heat Pumps Can Be Less Reliable in Colder Weather
Heat pumps are commonly less effective in cooler weather as a result of how they generate climate control to begin with. As opposed to furnaces, which burn fuel to generate heat, a heat pump reverses its flow of refrigerant to extract heat from outdoor air. This heat is then brought inside and distributed all through your home. As long as there is still some heat energy in the air, a heat pump can function. But the cooler the temperature, the less efficient this process is.
The less heat energy is usable outside, the more time is needed for a heat pump to pull heat indoors to generate your desired temperature. It may depend on the specific make and model, but heat pumps may start to drop in efficiency at temperatures of 40 degrees and under. They still remain 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 miss out on the benefits of a heat pump just because the local climate is cold. In fact, that’s why using both a furnace and heat pump can be worth the cost. You can use the heat pump for energy-efficient heat until the weather is cold enough to justify shifting to something like a gas furnace.
Certain makes and models tout greater efficiency in winter weather. For example, the Lennox MLA heat pump is capable of operating at 100% capacity at 0°F. It can even continue running in temperatures as extreme as -22°F. For maximum energy efficiency, you’ll likely still want to use the furnace in severely cold weather.
So Should I Install a Heat Pump if I Use a Gas Furnace?
If you’re serious about maintaining the most energy-efficient HVAC system possible, installing a heat pump and gas furnace at the same time is worth the investment. Not only is a dual-heating system versatile, but it offers other benefits including:
- Dependable backup heating – A redundant heating system means even if one fails, you still have the capability to heat your home. It may not be the most energy efficient, but it’s better than living in an unheated home while you sit around for repairs.
- Fewer energy costs – The ability to select which heating system you use based on the highest energy efficiency lowers your total costs. Smaller heating bills over the lifetime of these systems can really add up to plenty of savings.
- Less strain on both systems – Compared to running one system all winter long, heating resources are separated between the furnace and heat pump. Key hardware may survive longer since they’re not under continuous use.
If you’re still unsure about heat pump installation in Belton, don’t hesitate to get in touch with your local professional technicians. They can walk you through your home’s comfort needs and help you decide if a dual-heating HVAC system is the best option.