Can Heat Pumps Also Cool?

Can Heat Pumps Also Cool?When you hear about heat pumps, obviously, most people know that they can heat a home. What some people don’t realize though is that heat pumps also cool your home! Years ago you needed a separate air conditioner and heating system, most likely a furnace or baseboard heating, to keep your home comfortable all year long. That’s not the case anymore. 

In my 20+ years in the HVAC industry, heat pumps have become some of my favorite technologies to install in homes and businesses. They are versatile, energy efficient, and powerful enough to keep a space comfortable anytime of the year. I’ve installed hundreds of heat pumps, including ductless mini splits as well. 

This article will explain a bit more about how heat pumps work, and why they are considered a great option to replace your current HVAC system. If you have any questions or would like to speak to an expert, give Compass Heating and Air a call at (630) 504-8688, or contact us online!

Can A Heat Pump Replace My AC?

Yes, a heat pump can replace your AC system. In the summer, heat pumps operate much like an air conditioner, extracting indoor heat and releasing it outdoors. It’s one of the reasons so many people are deciding to install a heat pump when their furnace or air conditioner needs to be replaced. It offers an option that can take care of the home all year long, instead of needing two separate HVAC systems. 

In our area, some people opt for a dual fuel system, which means that a furnace and heat pump are both used in a home, and whichever is more convenient and efficient is used. 

How Do Heat Pumps Work?

Heat pumps operate on the principle of heat transfer. Using a refrigerant, these systems move heat from one place to another through a cycle of evaporation and condensation. 

In cooling mode, the heat pump’s indoor unit (evaporator coil) absorbs heat from the indoor air, and the refrigerant inside it evaporates. This vaporized refrigerant then travels to the outdoor unit (condenser), where it releases the absorbed heat and condenses back into a liquid. The process reverses in heating mode, with the outdoor unit acting as the evaporator and the indoor unit as the condenser, bringing heat into the home.

This system also runs on electricity, unlike traditional heating systems that burn oil or gas, and use combustion to create heat. Because this system runs on electricity, it gives you a more accurate idea of how expensive your heating and cooling bills will be. It also helps you conserve energy, and make less of an impact on the environment!

Are Heat Pumps Energy Efficient?

Heat pumps are some of the most energy efficient technology you can use to heat and cool your home. Heat pumps don’t generate heat; they simply move it from one place to another, which requires significantly less energy than generating heat through combustion or electric resistance heating.

The efficiency of a heat pump is often measured by its Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) for cooling and its Heating Seasonal Performance Factor (HSPF) for heating. The higher the rating, the more efficient your heat pump is. Because these systems are so energy efficient, they often qualify for rebates through local utility companies, and tax credits from the Inflation Reduction Act. 

Are Ductless Mini-Splits Heat Pumps?

This Daikin Emura System Will Keep The Living Room CoolDuctless mini-splits are a specific type of heat pump system that, as the name suggests, do not require a network of ducts to distribute air throughout the home. Instead, they consist of an outdoor unit connected to one or more indoor units via a small conduit. These indoor units are installed directly in the rooms they serve, offering zoned heating and cooling.

This system is perfect for additions, older homes with no room for ductwork, and we are seeing a lot in new construction too. Zoned HVAC that ductless units provide offer more customization with your comfort, and also save energy. Instead of having the whole home at the same temperature, you can vary what spaces are what temperatures. This allows you to stop fighting over the thermostat, or wasting energy treating rooms that aren’t being used. 

The Best HVAC Solution For Year-Round Comfort

When considering the best HVAC solution for year-round comfort, heat pumps, particularly ductless mini-splits, stand out for several reasons:

  • Versatility: Heat pumps offer both heating and cooling capabilities, eliminating the need for separate systems.
  • Energy Efficiency: Their method of transferring heat rather than generating it makes heat pumps more energy-efficient than traditional heating and cooling systems. This will help you save a few bucks when the energy bills come in. 
  • Customizable Comfort: With ductless mini-splits, you can control the temperature in individual rooms or zones. This means everyone can have their desired temps in their rooms, and no wasting energy cooling or heating unused spaces. 
  • Environmental Impact: Heat pumps have a smaller carbon footprint compared to most other HVAC systems, especially furnaces that burn oil or gas. 
  • Cost Savings: The price of heat pumps may be a bit more expensive to install, but over the lifetime of the system, your energy savings usually mean you are saving money. Rebates and tax credits can also help to alleviate some of these installation costs. 

If you are looking for some help with your heating and cooling, the experts at Compass can help. We have installed heat pumps at homes and businesses for years, and can help you design the RIGHT system for your situation. Give us a call at (630) 504-8688, or contact us online!