Did your air conditioner show signs of old age and wear this summer? Is your furnace on its last legs, leading you to wonder if it’s time for a new one? Have you been struggling to decide what you need to replace first, your air conditioner or your heating system?
If your answer to any or all of these questions was “yes,” then we have good news. There is one Gloucester County, NJ HVAC system that will serve all of your needs—the heat pump.
“But wait,” you might be thinking, “it’s called a heat pump, doesn’t that mean it’s only used for heating?”
Serving Your Heating and Cooling Needs in One
Yes, a heat pump is an effective heater. But it’s also an extremely efficient air conditioner, too! A heat pump uses the same components for both air conditioning and heating, and thus are becoming a leading choice of HVAC systems for homeowners throughout the area.
How Does a Heat Pump Work?
To understand this, you should first know the role that refrigerant plays in its functionality. Refrigerant is probably something you’re at least a little familiar with—the cooling process of any air conditioning system relies on this fluid in order to transfer heat. Refrigerant doesn’t create cooling. Rather, it moves it from one place to another to cool down a space (i.e. it moves hot air from the inside of your home, and expels it, putting incoming air through the cooling process).
Refrigerant continuously cycles through the inside coil, compressor, and outdoor coil, as well as through other components. Under the right temperature and pressure levels, it is able to absorb heat from the air inside your home. Refrigerant turns into a gas (meaning, it evaporates) indoors as warm air blows over the indoor coil, and absorbs heat from the air. Then, as it condenses and turns into a liquid, it releases heat outside, and cools down the coil to start the cooling process that we referred to above.
How This Works As a Heater
So, we’ve essentially just told you that a heat pump works as an air conditioner, so what good would it do you has a heater? Well, a reversing valve on the heat pump system enables refrigerant to flow in the opposite direction, so that refrigerant absorbs heat from the air around the outside unit of your home. Then, it deposits heat inside your home, and blows it through the ducts.
This is in contrast to conventional heating systems like a furnace, which uses combustion, the burning of fuel, or electrical resistance in order to generate heat, while a heat pump transfers it. This means that a heat pump uses far less energy to heat your home just as efficiently.
That being said, some heat pumps do struggle when temperatures get too low. This means they aren’t the perfect solution for all homes. But the best thing you can do is to contact a pro and discuss your options. We’ll be glad to help you find the right solution for your specific living space.