The thought of running both a furnace and heat pump may sound a little odd at first. After all, why would you need two heaters? Even though furnaces and heat pumps both produce energy-efficient heat, the changes in their design really make using both of them a potential option. It’s not for all of us, but under the right conditions you will definitely benefit from using a furnace and a heat pump.
You’ll need to weigh several factors in order to decide if this kind of setup helps you. Your local climate and the size of your home are both highly important, namely for the heat pump. This is because multiple models of heat pumps start to function less efficiently in colder weather and larger homes. Even so, you can still benefit from heat pump installation in Chelan and Wenatchee.
Heat Pumps Might Be Less Efficient in Colder Weather
Heat pumps are generally less effective in cooler weather because of how they create climate control to begin with. As opposed to furnaces, which burn fuel to generate heat, a heat pump reverses its flow of refrigerant to draw heat from outdoor air. This heat is then brought inside and circulated all through your home. As long as there is still a bit of heat energy in the air, a heat pump will function. But the lower the temperature, the less effective this process is.
The less heat energy is available outside, the longer it takes a heat pump to bring heat indoors to reach your desired temperature. It may depend on the exact make and model, but heat pumps can start to lose efficiency at temperatures of 40 degrees and below. They can still be an energy-efficient option until 20-25 degrees, at which a gas furnace should be more effective.
What Temperatures Do Heat Pumps Perform Best In?
Heat pumps work best in temperate climates 40 degrees and up. That being said, you don’t have to sacrifice the benefits of a heat pump just because your local climate is cold. As a matter of fact, that’s why using both a furnace and heat pump may be worth the cost. You can favor the heat pump for energy-efficient heat until the weather is cool enough to call for shifting to something like a gas furnace.
Some makes and models boast greater performance in winter 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 low as -22°F. For optimum energy efficiency, you’ll likely still want to switch to the furnace in especially cold weather.
So Should I Install a Heat Pump if I Have a Gas Furnace?
If you’re thinking about maintaining the most energy-efficient HVAC system possible, owning a heat pump and gas furnace at the same time is worth the investment. Not only is a dual-heating system adaptable, but it provides other perks such as:
Reliable backup heating – A redundant heating system means even if one fails, you still have the means to heat your home. It may not be the most energy efficient, but it’s better than shivering in an unheated home while you wait for repairs.
Lower energy costs – The ability to pick which heating system you use based on the highest energy efficiency lowers 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 – Instead of running one system all winter long, heating duties are divided between the furnace and heat pump. Key components will sometimes survive longer as they’re not under nonstop use.
If you’re still not sure about heat pump installation in Chelan and Wenatchee, don’t hesitate to contact your local certified technicians. They can evaluate your home’s comfort needs and help you decide if a dual-heating HVAC system is the best option.