The concept of using both a furnace and heat pump might feel somewhat unusual at first. After all, why do you need two sources of heat? Although furnaces and heat pumps both offer energy-efficient heat, the differences in their design genuinely make installing both of them a reasonable option. It’s not for all of us, but with the right conditions you can definitely benefit from owning a furnace and a heat pump.
You'll need to consider several factors in order to confirm if this sort of setup works for you. Your local climate and the square footage of your home are both especially important, namely for the heat pump. This is because multiple models of heat pumps will work less efficiently in cooler weather and large homes. That being said, you can still benefit from heat pump installation in Carson City.
Heat Pumps Might Be Less Reliable in Winter Weather
Heat pumps are typically less efficient in colder weather due to how they create climate control in the first place. Compared to furnaces, which combust 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 distributed around your home. Provided there is still some 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 accessible outside, the longer it takes a heat pump to draw heat indoors to reach your preferred temperature. It may depend on the type of make and model, but heat pumps may start to lose 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 manage best in temperate climates 40 degrees and up. That said, you don’t have to lose out on the benefits of a heat pump just because the local climate is cold. As a matter of 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 chilly enough to warrant switching to something like a gas furnace.
Some makes and models claim greater effectiveness in cold 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 optimum energy efficiency, you’ll likely still want to use the furnace in particularly cold weather.
So Should I Get a Heat Pump If I Have a Gas Furnace?
If you’re serious about maintaining the most energy-efficient HVAC system available, owning a heat pump and gas furnace at the same time warrants the investment. Not only is a dual-heating system adaptable, but it features other benefits including:
- Reliable 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 shivering in an unheated home while you hold out for repairs
- Lower energy costs – The ability to decide which heating system you use according to the highest energy efficiency reduces 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 – Rather than running one system all winter long, heating duties are divided between the furnace and heat pump. Crucial components could live longer given that they’re not under nonstop use.
If you’re still uncertain about heat pump installation in Carson City, don’t hesitate to get in touch with your local expert technicians. They can review your home’s comfort needs and help you figure out if a dual-heating HVAC system is the ideal option.