by Don Rackler on June 3, 2011
Heat pumps are a popular choice for homeowners living in milder climates like San Antonio. Because winter temperatures rarely drop below 30 degrees, a powerful furnace is generally not necessary. Homeowners in this climate focus more on air conditioning systems, with heat as a backup system when the weather calls for it – and heat pumps work well here.
A heat pump is designed to move heat around, instead of using energy to create it. This makes it a really efficient piece of equipment. In the summer, the heat-pump air-conditioning system takes the heat from the inside air and exhausts it outside, while taking the existing air and passing it over a the compressor to cool it.
In the winter, the cycle is reversed. The pump takes the heat that’s in the outside air and draws it inside, where the heat is then “pumped” into the home. What makes heat pumps so efficient in this process is its ability to transfer the heat. It’s far less costly to move heat than to produce it.
You can also get a hybrid heat pump that increases efficiency. A hybrid unit works with a backup heating system that usually depends on gas as a fuel. Here’s how it works: The controls on the hybrid system are set at a balance point, which is calculated based on your climate and how effectively the unit will heat and cool up or down to a particular temperature. Once the outside temperature goes past that point, the furnace automatically switches on — so you get the best efficiency no matter how hot or cold it is outside.
This balance point is adjustable. For example, if electricity rates go up in your city, your HVAC contractor can change the balance point to get the most efficient results. Some systems offer programmable controls so you can design a schedule that suits your family’s needs and the weather’s demands.
Questions? Contact Jon Wayne Heating & Air Conditioning today. Our expert technicians can help you assess your needs and select the right system for your home.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about heat pumps and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
Jon Wayne Heating and Air Conditioning services San Antonio and the surrounding communities of Seguin, New Braunfels, Bulverde, Boerne, and Comal County. To get started, check out our website or see our current promotions.