If you need a new heating system for your American Fork, UT, home, you’re likely choosing between a heat pump and a gas furnace. The former is gaining traction here in our area because it’s a highly efficient option. The latter has remained the gold standard in residential heating for over 100 years. But which is the right option for a home here in Utah? Here’s everything you need to know to make a wise choice.
The Benefits of Gas Furnaces
It’s no accident that gas furnaces are, by far, the most common type of residential heating. It’s because they come with some great benefits that make them hard to beat. For one thing, natural gas is plentiful and relatively inexpensive. That means gas furnaces offer the promise of relatively low heating costs. Plus, they’re based on mature technology that’s safe, reliable, and low-maintenance.
Gas furnaces are also somewhat inexpensive to purchase and install. On average, you can expect your new furnace to cost about $5,500, including installation. And, if you keep your new furnace well-maintained, you can expect it to give you up to 20 years of reliable service.
The Drawbacks of Gas Furnaces
The biggest drawback of using a gas furnace to heat your home is that it relies on combustion to create heat. That means they emit CO2 as a byproduct, which isn’t great for the environment. And if something goes wrong with your furnace, it could emit deadly carbon monoxide into your home. Plus, a gas furnace always comes with some risk of fire. Even though modern gas furnaces are safe, you are still relying on a controlled fire to heat your home.
The Benefits of Heat Pumps
Heat pumps are the only residential heating option that could cost you less to operate than a gas furnace. That’s because they don’t consume energy to produce heat. Instead, they harvest heat energy from the outside air using the refrigeration cycle and carry it indoors to heat your home. As a result, heat pumps can achieve efficiency levels approaching 400%, given the right conditions. That’s over four times the efficiency of even the best gas furnace on the market.
Another advantage of heat pumps is that they can cool your home in the summer, too. That means you won’t need a separate air conditioning system like you would with a gas furnace. Plus, heat pumps are among the most efficient cooling solutions available today.
The Drawbacks of Heat Pumps
For all their efficiency, heat pumps aren’t perfect. One of their biggest drawbacks is that they lose efficiency in extremely cold weather. When it’s 25 degrees Fahrenheit or below outside, a gas furnace could be a more efficient option. In some cases, a heat pump will even switch on a backup heating element when the temperature is very low. That makes certain you’ll have enough heat but will drive up your electricity bill in the process. Also, heat pumps don’t put out air that’s as hot as a gas furnace. So, if you’re the type of person who loves the feeling of piping hot air coming from your vents in the winter, you may not enjoy owning a heat pump.
Choosing Between the Two System Types
The reality is that gas furnaces and heat pumps both work well here in Utah. So, you really can’t go wrong with either one. That being said, your decision will likely come down to a few factors. One is the kind of heating system you already have. If your home already has a gas furnace, replacing it with a similar system will likely be your cheapest option.
However, if you want the most efficient heating system available and you’re willing to live with the drawbacks of a heat pump, you won’t regret buying one. Just know that you’ll be spending a bit more upfront but that you’ll recoup those costs through years of much lower energy bills.
Your Gas Furnace and Heat Pump Specialists
The good news is that Gunthers Heating, Cooling, and Plumbing has you covered whether you want a new gas furnace or a heat pump. Our company has roots here in American Fork going back to 1910 and a sterling reputation for customer service and flawless workmanship. And we even offer financing on approved credit to help you better afford whatever heating system you choose.
For heat pumps, gas furnaces, and all of your other heating needs in American Fork, call Gunthers Heating, Cooling, and Plumbing today.