Heat Pumps vs. Traditional HVAC Units

If you need a new HVAC system, you don’t have to default to central air conditioning. You also have the option to replace your whole heating and cooling system with a heat pump. Arthur Hagar offers trusted Carrier products for whatever decision you make, but it’s important to find the right fit for your home and your life. Get started by learning about the pros and cons of each system.

Heat Pumps


In the summer, heat pumps and central air conditioning units are almost identical. Heat pumps are more efficient, because they move heat rather than generate it, but the real advantage comes when the season changes. The system that heat pumps use to pull cold air into your house can be reversed to pull heat from the air outside instead, so you only need one unit for all seasons. It is also powered by electricity rather than gas, which can be cheaper depending on your property. Because electricity is a more sustainable resource, you may also qualify to receive rebates or tax incentives from the government or your utilities company. This all often translates to lower annual costs than you would pay using a central air conditioning system and furnace. It also has a similar lifespan to a central air conditioning unit, despite working year-round.


The main drawback of a heat pump is that while it excels at cooling and dehumidifying your home, it can struggle to heat your home when the temperature outside drops below 40 or 50 degrees. In moderate climates like Texas, this shouldn’t be a problem, but if it becomes very cold, your heat pump may need to pull from supplemental heat systems and the added energy consumption can become expensive. It may also cost more even in typical conditions if natural gas is readily available in your area, and is cheaper than electricity.

Central Air Conditioning & Furnaces


With separate cooling and heating systems, you can be confident of your comfort in any season. Central air conditioning units use virtually the same technology as heat pumps, and a furnace will be able to power through any winter weather. It is also a good choice to use these traditional systems if natural gas is prevalent in your area, because it will likely be cheaper than electricity. Another bonus of using two separate systems is that working only half the year may increase their lifespan. Furnaces typically last years longer than either heat pumps or central air conditioning, so while you will probably need to replace your air conditioning within 15 years, your furnace can last twice as long.


While heat pumps can work in all seasons, you will need both central air conditioning and a furnace if you want to heat and cool your home. It will cost more to install and maintain two separate units. A properly maintained furnace can operate for many years, but your air conditioning unit will most likely need to be replaced in the same 10- to 15-year span as a heat pump would. A gas-fueled furnace also comes with a few more safety hazards and, depending on your property, may be more expensive to run than an electric heat pump.

The Decision is Yours

A heat pump works well for moderate climates like Texas, but with more snow falling in southern states this year, you can never be too careful! In the end, it is up to you to decide which system fits your lifestyle and budget. If you have any questions, you can always contact the experienced sales team at Arthur Hagar, and they will help you find the perfect, personalized HVAC system for you. Call us today and receive a estimate!


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