Are Heat Pumps Worth It? Pros AND Cons Outlined

Installing a heat pump system in your home opens the door to a slew of advantages. They’re primarily designed to protect both you and the environment, which is a perfect duo for us.

Nevertheless, the prices of heat pumps can have you wondering, “Are heat pumps worth it?” This is the question we’re here to answer, so stick around.


Are Heat Pumps Worth It?

The answer is that it depends on your situation.

Installing a heat pump in your home or building is a long-term investment. We understand that the initial payment can be off-putting, but in the long run, you’ll end up saving money. Whether it’s because of lower energy bills or minimal maintenance.

Moreover, heat pumps aren’t only a great energy-saving alternative to air conditioners and furnaces, but also a hybrid of the two. A heat pump can produce both warm and cold temperatures.

However, just like anything else, a heat pump has a few drawbacks. So, to give you a better picture, we’ve gathered some of the benefits and downsides of installing one.

5 Benefits of Owning a Heat Pump

The benefits of having a heat pump system in your home include:

Lower Operating Costs

Thanks to its design and operating structure, a heat pump can save you up to $1,000 or more per year on energy bills. Simply put, energy-efficient systems, such as heat pumps, are far less expensive to maintain than combustion-based systems. They are more expensive to install though.

Heat pumps use electricity to circulate air from outside to inside your home. During this process, the air passes through a refrigerant, which either cools or heats the air. All of this is achieved without the use of a fuel source.

Require Minimal Maintenance

Unlike combustion-based systems, heat pumps require fewer maintenance checks. In fact, you should only have a technician come in once a year to perform general inspections and lubricate the motors. Some homeowners began to perform these checks on their own.

In any case, make sure that you don’t overlook a maintenance check. According to the US Department of Energy, a well-maintained heat pump can save up to 25% more energy than an unmaintained one.

Have Heating and Cooling Modes

A heat pump system can be used in heating mode in the winter and cooling mode in the summer. Consequently, there’ll be no need for two separate systems for each season.

In return, you’ll save money spent on energy bills as well as maintenance for air conditioners and heaters. Besides, this will free up some space in your home!

Enhance Air Quality

Most standard HVAC systems help trap airborne pollutants in your home, especially if they’re not well maintained.

Even if the unit is in the basement, combustion-based heating systems (such as a traditional gas heater) emit hazardous gases such as sulfur dioxide. Naturally, these gases can easily find their way to your home.

Whereas some heat pumps transfer air through ducts that purify the air, other heat pumps have ductless air purifiers that are even more effective at air purification.

Additionally, to achieve a high level of filtration, modern units now include ionic filters, plasma filters, and high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters.

Increase Safety

Unfortunately, any gas-powered unit is susceptible to carbon monoxide leakage. Carbon monoxide leaks kill approximately 400 Americans each year, especially during the winter, when people are heating their homes and not properly ventilating them. As a result, carbon monoxide continues to accumulate until it reaches dangerou levels.

Heat pumps, on the other hand, run on electricity, so you won’t have to worry about that.

Furthermore, you’ll avoid the hassle of a carbon monoxide detector and its routine maintenance.

5 Downsides of Owning a Heat Pump

The downsides of having a heat pump system in your home include:

High Initial Cost

This is regarded as one of the main issues when purchasing a heat pump. Both the cost of purchasing one as well as the cost of installing it can be very pricey.

Although, if you give it some thought, the complexity of installing such a unit and the technology used in it can make sense.

There are 2 main types of heat pumps: air and ground-based. Ground-based systems require expensive drilling. In some instances, these costs can be shared between several houses. Air-based systems are often installed on the roof.

Complicated Installation Process

If you decide to purchase a heat pump, experts will take some time to conduct preliminary research. To plan its installation, they must understand the movement of heat as well as the local geology of where you’re located.

Besides, parts of your home and garden may be destroyed during the installation process. This is why the installer needs to study the situation before they can start the works.

Runs Completely on Electricity

Even though an electrically powered unit comes with many perks, it still has drawbacks.

Because heat pumps are powered by electricity, they’ll not work if there’s a power outage. Of course, this can be quite inconvenient on extremely hot or bitterly cold days.

Performance Affected by Low Temperatures

During snowy winters, the outdoor unit of a heat pump can freeze, causing performance issues. In some cases, the unit may occasionally freeze, but it can be easily defrosted. Yet, in other cases, the unit’s fan malfunctions and doesn’t properly draw air into the unit.

Moreover, excessive snow can cause the evaporator coil or fan blades to become clogged. All of this will disrupt the airflow and prevent you from receiving the desired level of warmth.

Not Suitable for All Households

Several factors can influence whether or not your building or home can accommodate a heat pump. Buildings are sometimes not fully prepared to house a heat pump.

Buildings with no exterior space are a good example. In this case, there’ll be no room for the outdoor unit, and subsequently, you’ll be unable to install the heat pump system.

Wrapping Up

We believe you now have a clearer picture and can weigh the pros and cons of purchasing a heat pump to see if it’s a suitable purchase or not.

Owning a heat pump eliminates some of the concerning risks associated with traditional HVAC systems. For us, this is one of its most significant benefits.

So, are heat pumps worth it? Our answer is a resounding yes if your house has the right characteristics.