4 Differences Between Furnaces and Heat Pumps in Fredericksburg, VA

Furnaces burn fuel or use electricity to deliver heat, whereas heat pumps transfer heat into your home. There are many other differences between furnaces and heat pumps that you should know before choosing a heating system in Fredericksburg, VA. There are key differences in lifespan, air conditioning capability, effectiveness in below-freezing temperatures and cost of operation.

1. Lifespan

The average furnace lasts 15–20 years, and the average heat pump lasts 10–15 years. How well you maintain your heating system, whether it’s a furnace or a heat pump, affects how long it lasts. You need to hire a reputable heating company to tune the heating system once a year to get the most out of its lifespan.

2. Air Conditioning Capability

Heat pumps can provide air conditioning during the hot months of the year because of their thermodynamic technology. Rather than drawing heat from the outside like it would during winter, it removes heat from the home to cool it. Furnaces aren’t able to cool your home, so you need an air conditioning system for the hot months.

3. Effectiveness in Below Freezing Temperatures

Furnaces are better than heat pumps at effectively heating your home in below-freezing temperatures. If you like keeping your home toasty, then a furnace is right for you. Heat pumps give off slightly cool air rather than hot air, which some people find is a deal-breaker for them.

A heat pump can still heat your home when the outside temperature drops below freezing, but it becomes less efficient. Indoor comfort suffers as well. Those who feel comfortable in cooler environments, however, won’t have an issue with a heat pump. Hybrid systems use a furnace as a backup unit and a heat pump for the main source of heat, which is one solution to this issue.

4. Cost of Operation

Heat pumps are cheaper to operate than furnaces. The cost of operation partially depends on the energy efficiency of the heating system you choose, but in general, furnaces cost almost twice as much to operate in Fredericksburg, VA.

The decision between a furnace and a heat pump comes down to what’s most important to you in a heating system. Contact Custom/Design for assistance in choosing the right heating installation for your home in Fredericksburg, VA.

Image provided by iStock

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