The thought of installing both a furnace and heat pump can seem a little unusual at first. After all, why do you need two heating systems? Even though furnaces and heat pumps both deliver energy-efficient heat, the changes in their design actually make using both of them a practical option. It’s not for everybody, but with the right conditions you can absolutely benefit from having a furnace and a heat pump.
You'll need to weigh several factors in order to confirm if this type of setup works for you. Your local climate and the square footage of your home are both very important, especially for the heat pump. This is because numerous models of heat pumps will function less effectively in colder weather and large homes. At the same time, you can still benefit from heat pump installation in Derby.
Heat Pumps Might Be Less Efficient in Colder Weather
Heat pumps are typically less effective in cold weather as a result of how they generate climate control in the first place. Compared to furnaces, which burn fuel to provide heat, a heat pump reverses its flow of refrigerant to draw heat from outdoor air. This heat is then pulled inside and dispersed all through 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 efficient this process is.
The less heat energy is available outside, the more time is needed for a heat pump to pull heat indoors to generate your desired temperature. It can depend on the specific make and model, but heat pumps may start to lose efficiency at temperatures of 40 degrees and colder. 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 Run Best In?
Heat pumps work best in milder climates 40 degrees and up. That said, you don’t have to give up 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 might be worth the expense. You can use the heat pump for energy-efficient heat until the weather is cool enough to warrant switching to something like a gas furnace.
Some makes and models boast greater effectiveness in cold weather. For example, the Lennox MLA heat pump is capable of working at 100% capacity at 0°F. It can even remain functional in temperatures as cold as -22°F. For maximum 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 thinking about maintaining the most energy-efficient HVAC system achievable, owning a heat pump and gas furnace at the same time deserves the investment. Not only is a dual-heating system adaptable, but it provides other benefits such as:
- Reliable backup heating – A redundant heating system means even if one breaks down, 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 sit around for repairs
- Lower energy costs – The ability to choose which heating system you use according to the highest energy efficiency lowers your total costs. Smaller heating bills over the lifetime of these systems can really add up to a lot of savings
- Less strain on both systems – Compared to running one system all winter long, heating responsibilities are separated between the furnace and heat pump. Key hardware will sometimes live longer given that they’re not under nonstop use.
If you’re still hesitant about heat pump installation in Derby, don’t hesitate to get in touch with your local professional technicians. They can evaluate your home’s comfort needs and help you figure out if a dual-heating HVAC system is the right option.