If you’re a homeowner who’s considering energy alternatives, chances are that you’re most familiar with standard furnace and air conditioning units. In that case, this may be the first time that you’re learning about heat pumps for residential use. They’re becoming increasingly popular, especially in Southern states.

How do you know if it’s the right choice for your home? Before you make that decision, it’s important to learn how a heat pump works and what kinds of advantages it offers.

How a Heat Pump Works

A heat pump is a mechanical-compression cycle refrigeration system that can be reversed whether it’s needed to heat or cool a space. Although the system is referred to generally as a “heat pump,” that’s just one component of the system that’s located outside, similar to a central air conditioner. There’s also an indoor unit, called an air handler. The two units work together, circulating refrigerant that absorbs and releases heat as it travels between the indoor and outdoor units.

Here’s the major difference between a heat pump and an HVAC unit: A heat pump moves heat, instead of generating heat or cool air. It uses electricity to move heat from a cool space to a warm space, making the cool space cooler and the warm space warmer. So, during the heating season, heat energy from the cool outdoors is moved into your warm house. And during the cooling season, it works in reverse: Heat from your cool house is moved to the warm outdoors.

Since a heat pump moves energy instead of generating it, it can trim the amount of electricity used for heating by as much as 30% to 40%. High-efficiency heat pumps can also dehumidify better than standard air conditioners, resulting in less energy usage and therefore, a lower energy bill.

Advantages of Trane Heat Pumps

For Houston homes, Clear the Air Cooling & Heating offers Trane heat pumps with a range of efficiency levels, depending on your home and your budget. Four models are currently available: Ultra, Super, High, and Standard Efficiency. Your Clear the Air comfort specialist will detail your options, and then help select the best unit for your space.

Trane is the only manufacturer to use the patented Spine Fin outdoor coil in its units. These coils provide greater heat-transfer capabilities and resist corrosion better than traditional aluminum or copper coils. Higher efficiencies mean lower costs.

Just like any major household appliance, maintaining a heat pump affects its efficiency and energy consumption. On average, there is a 10% to 25% difference in energy consumption between a well-maintained heat pump and a neglected one. So, once a year, you should call a professional technician to inspect your heat pump’s various components for dirt buildup, obstructions, seal duct leakage and belt movement.

Clear the Air is Here to Help

Replacing or upgrading your home’s heating and cooling system is a major decision. The professionals at Clear the Air are here to guide you through the process.

We’ll help you decide whether a heat pump is the best choice for your Houston-area home, based on its construction and size. We’ll also take into account your comfort requirements and your budget.

To schedule your consultation or to speak with one of our team members, ask a tech or call 281.247.0522 today!