A heat pump does not heat your home in the same way that a furnace does. Whereas a furnace burns a fuel to create heat, a heat pump simply absorbs heat from one location and then expels it into another. Each heating system has its strengths and weaknesses, and by using them together, you can get the best performance from your HVAC system.
An Analysis of a Furnace
The main advantage of a furnace is that it will create its own heat. This means that no matter what the weather outside your home is doing, your furnace will be able to heat your home. On the other hand, even the most efficient furnaces will never be able to extract more heat than what is available in the gases they burn. In fact, the best furnaces top out at 98% efficient.
An Analysis of a Heat Pump
Unlike a furnace, a heat pump does not create its own heat. Because a heat pump functions to move heat from one place to another, it can be used to move heat into or out of your house. Thus, you can use the same piece of equipment to both heat and cool your home. A heat pump can move as much as 2.5 units of heat for every unit of electricity it uses, which translates to an efficiency rating of 250%. You might ask, at this point, why you even need a furnace? Heat pumps struggle to heat your home when the outside temperature drops below freezing. Thus, if you live in an area that gets extremely cold in the winter, you will need a furnace to keep your house warm.
Using a Heat Pump and Furnace Together
If you live in the North of the country, you probably will not be able to use a heat pump to keep your home comfortable year round. You can, however, use your heat pump to keep your home cool during the summer and to keep it warm during the transition seasons. You should install a furnace, though, so that you have a way to keep your home warm when the heating provided by a heat pump falls short.
While most people will use an AC unit and a furnace to keep their home comfortable year round, you can get greater efficiency and flexibility by using a heat pump with your furnace. Talk to an HVAC tech to see of a heat pump is a good choice for you.Share
10 March 2016
Hi there, my name is Shelley. Welcome to my site about electric heating systems. Electric heat has recently fallen out of favor due to the efficiency of natural gas systems. Electric heat is still suitable for small buildings that do not need the high temps provided by upgraded systems. I will use this site to explore all of the building types that can benefit from electric heating systems. I will also share information about system components, installations and repairs. I welcome you to come by often to learn more about this exciting topic. Thanks for coming by. See you soon.