The idea of installing both a furnace and heat pump may seem somewhat unusual at first. After all, why should you need two sources of heat? Although furnaces and heat pumps both produce energy-efficient heat, the differences in their design genuinely make installing both of them a potential option. It’s not for everybody, but in the right conditions you could truly benefit from having a furnace and a heat pump.
You'll need to think about 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 especially important, namely for the heat pump. This is because multiple models of heat pumps will function less efficiently in cooler weather and bigger homes. Even so, you can still benefit from heat pump installation in Tomball.
Heat Pumps May Be Less Effective in Colder Weather
Heat pumps are commonly less reliable in cooler weather as a result of how they provide climate control to start with. Unlike furnaces, which ignite fuel to generate heat, a heat pump reverses its stream of refrigerant to extract heat from outdoor air. This heat is then pulled inside and distributed around your home. As long as there is still some heat energy in the air, a heat pump should function. But the cooler the temperature, the less effective this process is.
The less heat energy is usable outside, the more time is needed for a heat pump to bring heat indoors to maintain your ideal temperature. It can depend on the specific make and model, but heat pumps generally start to lose efficiency at temperatures of 40 degrees and colder. They still remain 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 work best in milder climates 40 degrees and up. Having said that, you don’t have to miss out on the benefits of a heat pump just because the local climate is colder. After all, that’s why having 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 chilly enough to justify switching to something like a gas furnace.
Some makes and models feature greater efficiency in cold weather. For example, the Lennox MLA heat pump is capable of operating at 100% capacity at 0°F. It can even remain functional in temperatures as cold as -22°F. For maximum energy efficiency, you’ll likely still want to swap to the furnace in particularly cold weather.
So Should I Install a Heat Pump If I Own a Gas Furnace?
If you’re thinking about maintaining the most energy-efficient HVAC system available, 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 perks including:
- A source of backup heating – A redundant heating system means even if one breaks down, you still have the ability 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
- Fewer energy costs – The ability to pick which heating system you use depending on the highest energy efficiency decreases your total costs. Smaller heating bills over the life span of these systems can really add up to lots of savings
- Less strain on both systems – Rather than running one system all winter long, heating responsibilities are divided between the furnace and heat pump. Key hardware could live longer since they’re not under nonstop use.
If you’re still not sure about heat pump installation in Tomball, don’t hesitate to contact your local expert technicians. They can walk you through your home’s comfort needs and help you determine if a dual-heating HVAC system is the better option.