Understanding Heat Pumps vs. Furnaces: Making the Right Choice for Your Home

Knowing the difference between a heat pump and a furnace will help you determine which is the better choice for your home.

Most people are more familiar with furnaces as opposed to heat pumps. A furnace uses fuel (such as natural gas, oil, or wood) to produce energy that results in heat that is sent throughout the home. A heat pump on the other hand, uses electricity and coolant to generate heat from the air outside of the home by reversing the refrigeration cycle. Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons of both.

Pros: Furnace

  • Longer average life-span than heat pumps
  • More energy efficient in areas with long winters
  • Less costly to purchase and install than a heat pump

Cons: Furnace

  • Powered by limited resources (i.e. gas and oil)
  • Can be more costly to operate depending on the fuel the furnace uses (natural gas is less expensive than electricity in many areas, but oil is much more expensive than electricity, for example)
  • Typically requires more maintenance over time

Pros: Heat pump

  • Doubles as an air conditioner in warmer months; only needs one system to install versus having a furnace and separate central air
  • Can improve indoor air quality with the use of filters
  • Extremely efficient with no byproducts; uses electricity only

Cons: Heat pump

  • Better suited for moderately temperate areas, not efficient in areas with very cold winters
  • More costly to purchase and install
  • Shorter life-span than a furnace

If you have any further questions on whether a furnace or a heat pump is right for your home, visit our website. At Wellmann Heating & Air, Inc, we offer over 179 years of combined experience in heating and air conditioning repair and installation, thermostat integration, indoor air quality solutions, and more. Contact us today to discover how we can get your home running at optimum efficiency!