3 Things to Know about Heat Pumps
A large air conditioner sitting in the grass.

In the market for a new air conditioning system AND heater? Consider a heat pump! We install and service a lot of heat pumps in Texas, which may surprise you since the term “heat pump” seems as though the system would be primarily for heating. However, it’s equal parts heater and air conditioner, using the same components for both processes.

Just because heat pumps are becoming more common in our area, that doesn’t mean local homeowners have all the answers to your questions about these central heating and air systems. We’re here to answer your questions when you need us, starting with this description of 3 things we think anyone should know about 

Heat Pumps Use Refrigeration

First, you should know a bit about the process used for heating and cooling with a heat pump. Refrigeration, something you normally associate with cooling and freezing, is used for both heating and cooling. In the summer, the refrigerant absorbs heat from the inside of the home and moves it outside, as with a conventional central air conditioner. And in winter, heat is absorbed from the outdoor air and moved inside—even as temperatures near freezing!

Why is this so important to know? Well, many homeowners are surprised to find out they have a refrigerant leak during the heating season or are concerned when they hear the outdoor unit running in heating mode. Remember, the components used are the same for both processes, so the same problems might come up in winter as in summer. That means professional maintenance is important throughout the year!

Heat Pumps Are More Efficient than Most Comparable Systems

Many houses in our service area use electric furnaces for heating, but this can be expensive due to the significant amount of energy needed to generate enough heat for comfort. Heat pumps only move heat, which is a much more efficient process. For air conditioning, heat pumps are a much better option than, say, window units and room air conditioners.

Of course, you’ll still have to find a heat pump that is the right fit for your home and look for a high-efficiency unit if you really want to save. That means finding one with a SEER rating of well over 15 for maximum energy savings.

Heat Pumps Are Available as Ductless Systems

It’s a bummer that some homes in our area have no ductwork or are lacking ductwork in certain rooms, considering the amount of heat we deal with every year and the need for central air. If you’re not up for outfitting your home with ducts due to the time and cost associated, or if you want to preserve the historic value of your home, a ductless heat pump may be the right fit for your home.

Most ductless mini-split systems are actually heat pumps. They have an outdoor unit, several wall-mounted indoor units in various rooms, and a refrigerant line with a reversing valve to allow for both heating and cooling. This is the perfect fit for many homeowners, so call your local technicians to learn more!

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