How Heat Pumps and Furnaces Differ

Choosing the right heating system for your Leonardtown, Maryland home can be challenging. Working with HVAC professionals who understand the advantages of and differences between various types of heating systems can help you to make the most appropriate choice for your home and your family’s comfort now and for years into the future. Here are six key differences between heat pumps and furnaces to help you make the right choice for your indoor comfort.

How Efficient They Are

One key difference between a heat-pump system and typical furnace-type installations is efficiency. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, some geothermal heat pump systems can lower energy usage by 70 to 80 percent compared with furnace air conditioning systems. This can allow you to enjoy sustainable comfort at home throughout the year. In general, heat pump systems are far more energy-efficient and can reduce exhaust emissions during the winter months.

How Much They Cost to Run

While heat pump systems are generally much less expensive to run than their counterparts, extremely cold temperatures outside can sometimes reduce the efficiency of these advanced systems. Hybrid systems that incorporate auxiliary heating from a furnace type system can sometimes be more affordable for families in Leonardtown, Maryland and the surrounding communities.

How Safe They Are

Both heat pump systems and gas furnace installations can pose risks to families if not properly maintained. Heat pump systems run on electricity, which can be dangerous if an untrained person tries to fix wiring or another electrical component of the system.

Gas furnace systems, on the other hand, can produce unsafe levels of carbon monoxide if not properly maintained and inspected. While small amounts of carbon monoxide are generated by normal use, exposure to high concentrations of this gas can cause injury or death.

How Much They Cost to Install

In most cases, a gas furnace installation can be significantly less expensive than a comparable heat pump install job. This is especially true if you already have gas service to your Maryland home.

Heat pump systems can sometimes be more expensive to install. These initial costs, however, are often outweighed by the superior efficiency of these advanced systems after installation and for years to come. Consulting with your local HVAC experts is usually the best way to determine which option is best for you and your family.

How They Work

Furnace-type heating systems burn fuel or pass electricity through a coil that heats up. That heat is transferred to air, which is then distributed throughout your home. This allows heat to be produced quickly for quicker warm-ups inside. The drawback, however, is that combustion furnaces produce emissions and are less efficient than most heat-pump systems.

Because a heat pump system is designed to absorb and transfer heat either from the outside to indoors or vice versa, these systems operate on electricity. Your heat pump may take longer to warm or cool your home than a standard gas furnace type system.

How Long They Last

Gas furnace systems typically last for 20 years, and sometimes longer, if properly maintained and operated. Because heat pump systems combine heating and cooling into one unit, they operate more frequently to provide indoor comfort all year around. This reduces the useful life of heat pump installations to 15 years. In many cases, however, the added versatility of a heat pump system can make up for the somewhat shorter lifespan of these advanced and energy-efficient systems.

At Hancock Refrigeration, we can provide repairs, replacements and maintenance for all types of heating and cooling systems. We are a Trane Comfort Specialist and a member of the Air Conditioning Contractors of America. Our NATE-certified technicians can provide prompt and practical options for keeping things cozy in Leonardtown, California, Lusby, La Plata and Mechanicsville, Maryland. If you are considering a new heat pump or gas furnace system, we can provide you with the information and guidance you need to make the right choice. To learn more about your heating installation options, contact Hancock Refrigeration today. We are here to help you achieve absolute comfort this winter and for many years to come.

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