The thought of installing both a furnace and heat pump may feel a bit odd at first. After all, why do you need two sources of heat? Even though furnaces and heat pumps both offer energy-efficient heat, the changes in their design really make employing both of them a worthwhile option. It’s not for all of us, but with the right conditions you will truly benefit from having a furnace and a heat pump.

You should weigh several factors in order to confirm if this sort of setup helps you. Your local climate and the dimensions of your home are both especially important, especially for the heat pump. This is because some models of heat pumps begin to work less effectively in colder weather and bigger homes. At the same time, you can still take advantage of heat pump installation in Richmond.

Heat Pumps Can Be Less Effective in Winter Weather

Heat pumps are commonly less reliable in colder weather as a result of how they generate climate control to begin with. As opposed to furnaces, which burn fuel to provide heat, a heat pump reverses its supply of refrigerant to pull heat from outdoor air. This heat is then drawn inside and distributed all through your home. As long as there is still some heat energy in the air, a heat pump will function. But the colder the temperature, the less effective this process is.

The less heat energy is available outside, the longer it takes a heat pump to draw heat indoors to reach your ideal temperature. It may depend on the type of make and model, but heat pumps can start to lose 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 is 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 give up on the benefits of a heat pump just because the local climate is cold. After all, that’s why using both a furnace and heat pump may be worth the expense. You can keep the heat pump for energy-efficient heat until the weather is chilly enough to call for switching to something like a gas furnace.

Certain makes and models tout greater performance in cooler 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 optimum energy efficiency, you’ll likely still want to switch to the furnace in especially cold weather.

So Should I Install a Heat Pump if I Use a Gas Furnace?

If you’re serious about maintaining the most energy-efficient HVAC system possible, installing a heat pump and gas furnace at the same time is worth the investment. Not only is a dual-heating system versatile, but it provides other perks like:

  • Reliable backup heating – A redundant heating system means even if one stops working, you still have the means to heat your home. It may not be the most energy efficient, but it’s better than living in an unheated home while you sit around for repairs.
  • Fewer energy costs – The ability to select which heating system you use based on the highest energy efficiency lowers your total costs. Smaller heating bills over the lifetime of these heaters can really add up to lots of savings.
  • Less strain on both systems – Rather than running one system all winter long, heating resources are split between the furnace and heat pump. Essential parts can live longer given that they’re not under continuous use.

If you’re still uncertain about heat pump installation in Richmond, don’t hesitate to contact your local professional technicians. They can walk you through your home’s comfort needs and help you determine if a dual-heating HVAC system is the ideal option.