The idea of running both a furnace and heat pump can seem a bit unusual at first. After all, why would you need two heating systems? While furnaces and heat pumps both produce energy-efficient heat, the differences in their design really make installing both of them a viable option. It’s not for all of us, but in the right conditions you will absolutely benefit from using a furnace and a heat pump.
You’ll want to weigh several factors in order to decide if this type of setup suits you. Your local climate and the size of your home are both especially important, especially for the heat pump. This is because numerous models of heat pumps will run less effectively in colder weather and bigger homes. That being said, you can still take advantage of heat pump installation in Monroe.
Heat Pumps Can Be Less Reliable in Winter Weather
Heat pumps are typically less reliable in cold weather as a result of how they generate climate control to start with. Unlike furnaces, which ignite fuel to provide heat, a heat pump reverses its supply of refrigerant to draw heat from outdoor air. This heat is then brought inside and distributed all through your home. Provided there is still a little heat energy in the air, a heat pump should function. But the lower the temperature, the less effective this process is.
The less heat energy is usable outside, the more effort is required for a heat pump to draw heat indoors to generate your preferred temperature. It can depend on the specific make and model, but heat pumps can start to lose out on 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 is more effective.
What Temperatures Do Heat Pumps Work Best In?
Heat pumps function best in moderate climates 40 degrees and up. That being said, you don’t have to lose out on the benefits of a heat pump just because the local climate is cooler. After all, that’s why owning both a furnace and heat pump can be worth the expense. You can favor the heat pump for energy-efficient heat until the weather is chilly enough to justify swapping to something like a gas furnace.
Certain makes and models tout greater performance 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 low as -22°F. For optimal energy efficiency, you’ll likely still want to use the furnace in severely cold weather.
So Should I Put In a Heat Pump If I Own a Gas Furnace?
If you’re interested in maintaining the most energy-efficient HVAC system achievable, installing a heat pump and gas furnace at the same time warrants the investment. Not only is a dual-heating system versatile, but it features other perks like:
- A source of backup heating – A redundant heating system means even if one breaks down, you still have the means to heat your home. It won't always be the most energy efficient, but it’s better than having an unheated home while you hold out for repairs
- Fewer energy costs – The ability to select which heating system you use depending on the highest energy efficiency decreases your total costs. Smaller heating bills over the lifetime of these systems can really add up to lots of savings
- Less strain on both systems – Compared to running one system all winter long, heating responsibilities are split between the furnace and heat pump. Essential hardware will sometimes survive longer given that they’re not under continuous use.
If you’re still hesitant about heat pump installation in Monroe, don’t hesitate to reach out to your local certified technicians. They can evaluate your home’s comfort needs and help you decide if a dual-heating HVAC system is the right option.