A Heat Pump Is a Good Comfort Option Even in Our Winters
December 16, 2019
Are you familiar with the heat pump as an option for your home heating in Andover, MA? If you aren’t, that isn’t a major surprise. Heat pumps are common in warmer climates, such as in Florida and the Southwest, where they have little trouble providing warmth to homes during mild winters. In colder climates—and Boston certainly counts as that—heat pumps have a reputation as not making for an efficient heating choice. But the old conventional wisdom no longer applies. A heat pump may be just right for your home, the option you didn’t know you were looking for.
The Concern About Heat Pumps in Cold WeatherWhy would a heating system have problems with winter weather? It seems like a major design flaw, doesn’t it? The reason is that a heat pump is more than a heating system. It’s also a cooling system. Imagine an air conditioner that can switch the direction it works. An AC cools down the inside of a home by moving heat from the indoor air and forcing it outside. That’s why when you stand next to the outdoor condenser of an air conditioner when it’s running, you feel warm air blown out from it. Now imagine swapping the way the AC works so that it’s drawing heat from the outdoor air and then blowing the heat inside the house. That’s how a heat pump provides warmth to a house. And with a simple adjustment to the thermostat, the heat pump goes back to cooling. It’s a great two-in-one solution. But you’ve probably spotted the potential drawback. When a heat pump runs in heating mode, it’s because temperatures outside are cold. How is the heat pump able to draw heat from the cold air? There’s always heat available in the air, but it’s easier for a heat pump to function when the temperature is in 30s and above. For colder weather, a heat pump can struggle.
Improvements in Heat Pump TechnologyNow you know why heat pumps haven’t made inroads into places like Boston, where winter weather frequently falls below temperatures a heat pump could deal with. But heat pump technology has gotten much better in recent years, and most models can now function in far colder conditions, making them a viable option for our climate.
Why a Heat Pump May Be a Good Choice for YouIf your house has natural gas and you use it to power a furnace, then a heat pump probably isn’t an ideal choice. However, if you don’t have natural gas and instead use an electric-powered furnace, a heat pump can make a huge difference. A heat pump uses much less electricity to run than an electric furnace. A home can save hundreds of dollars a year. On average, a heat pump can provide three times more heat energy to a space compared to the electrical energy it consumes. Heat pumps are also convenient: you’re getting a great air conditioning system as well, and there’s only one unit you need to worry about when it comes to repairs and maintenance. To find out if a heat pump is the best choice for year-round comfort for your household, call our experts today.
Basnett Plumbing, Heating & AC has served MetroWest Boston for over 30 years. Schedule service today.