The idea of using both a furnace and heat pump may sound somewhat odd at first. After all, why do you need two heating systems? While furnaces and heat pumps both deliver energy-efficient heat, the differences in their design really make employing both of them a reasonable option. It’s not for everybody, but in the right conditions you will definitely benefit from having a furnace and a heat pump.
You should take a look at several factors in order to decide if this type of setup suits you. Your local climate and the size of your home are both highly important, particularly for the heat pump. This is because multiple models of heat pumps will run less effectively in colder weather and large homes. Even so, you can still reap the benefits of heat pump installation in Omaha.
Heat Pumps Might Be Less Reliable in Colder Weather
Heat pumps are commonly less effective in cooler weather because of how they provide climate control to start with. Compared to furnaces, which ignite fuel to create heat, a heat pump reverses its supply of refrigerant to draw heat from outdoor air. This heat is then drawn inside and distributed around your home. Assuming there is still a little heat energy in the air, a heat pump can function. But the lower the temperature, the less effective this process is.
The less heat energy is available outside, the more effort is required for a heat pump to pull heat indoors to reach your ideal temperature. It might depend on the specific make and model, but heat pumps generally start to lose out on efficiency at temperatures of 40 degrees and under. They should still be an energy-efficient option until 20-25 degrees, at which point a gas furnace should be more effective.
What Temperatures Do Heat Pumps Run Best In?
Heat pumps work best in milder climates 40 degrees and up. That said, you don’t have to sacrifice the benefits of a heat pump just because the local climate is cold. As a matter of fact, that’s why owning both a furnace and heat pump can be worth the expense. You can use the heat pump for energy-efficient heat until the weather is chilly enough to call for switching to something like a gas furnace.
A few makes and models claim greater efficiency in cooler weather. For example, the Lennox MLA heat pump is capable of working at 100% capacity at 0°F. It can even remain efficient in temperatures as low as -22°F. For optimal energy efficiency, you’ll likely still want to switch to the furnace in particularly cold weather.
So Should I Put In a Heat Pump If I Have a Gas Furnace?
If you’re interested in maintaining the most energy-efficient HVAC system possible, having 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 like:
- Dependable backup heating – A redundant heating system means even if one fails, you still have the ability to heat your home. It may not be the most energy efficient, but it’s better than living in an unheated home while you wait for repairs
- Reduced energy costs – The ability to choose which heating system you use according to the highest energy efficiency reduces your total costs. Smaller heating bills over the lifetime of these heaters can really add up to plenty of savings
- Less strain on both systems – Instead of running one system all winter long, heating duties are split between the furnace and heat pump. Key parts may last longer since they’re not under constant use.
If you’re still hesitant about heat pump installation in Omaha, don’t hesitate to contact your local expert technicians. They can walk you through your home’s comfort needs and help you figure out if a dual-heating HVAC system is the right option.