Is Buying a Heat Pump a Good Idea in Texas?
- Can a heat pump take care of heating in Houston, Dallas or San Antonio areas?
- Will I save enough on energy bills to pay for the cost?
- Can I convert my current air conditioner into a heat pump?
Just a decade ago, Texas homeowners never gave heat pump technology a second thought when they needed a new or replacement AC system. That has changed. Today, this new option is available for all types of air conditioning equipment for homes throughout the state, from the Houston and Dallas Fort Worth metro areas to San Antonio. There are many affordable, quality brands to choose from, including, Carrier, Lennox, Daikin, Trane, Rheem, Comfortmaker, Amana, Ducane, Ruud and American Standard. Each year, more and more Texans are opting for this economically smart option after they talk to their HVAC contractors about a new AC purchase. Adding the heating capability has become almost automatic for most homes. There are many excellent reasons to make that decision:
The Special Climate in Texas
The mild winter climate in Texas is the key to the success and increased popularity of this new technology. Working like an air conditioner in reverse, they use the residual heat in outdoor air to transfer heat from outside to inside. If you’ve ever stood near an air conditioning unit when it’s running, you’ve felt the heat coming from the condenser coil. It’s much warmer than the air inside your home. With a heat pump, the indoor coil becomes the condenser coil releasing warm air into the home. Even when temperatures outdoors go as low as 30 degrees or even lower, this heating mechanism can be effective, all without burning any fuel or using expensive electricity to generate heat. They work extremely well in Texas.
Save Big on Energy Bills
In traditional heating systems, heat for a home is generated by burning natural gas or propane or from electrical resistance coils or strips. The cost of natural gas or electric heat can be seen in higher energy bills during the warmer season. Heat pumps use the AC refrigeration cycle in reverse to transfer heat from outdoors into the home. This process works even when outdoor temperatures are lower than the desired temperature. The compressor in the system, along with refrigerant condensation and evaporation, does the work. In typical Texas winter weather, it costs only about 1/3 of the energy with a heat pump, compared to electricity. The savings are less compared with natural gas heating, but are still significant.
The Additional Equipment Cost Is Relatively Small
Adding heat pump capability to any air conditioning system raises the initial price of that equipment. For a typical central or ductless mini-split AC unit, a heat pump version costs around $1,000 or so more than an AC-only unit. You may also need a new thermostat. Installation cost for either option, however, remains about the same. Your air conditioning company can do the calculations for you to show you how quickly you’ll recover the extra cost through energy bill savings. Most Texas homeowners are surprised at how much they can save over the expected life of their system. Once you see those figures, you’ll understand why choosing a heat pump means big savings over time.
When It’s Too Cold, Your Normal Heating System Takes Over
Every year, in most parts of Texas, particularly in the Dallas and San Antonio areas, there are a few days when temperatures fall too low for a heat pump to provide home heating effectively. On those days, your existing gas or electric heating system kicks in to do the job. With a heat pump installed, you have a hybrid home comfort system that works automatically to select the best, most economical heating method. You get even, smooth temperature control throughout the fall and winter months. You also enjoy substantial energy bill savings with a hybrid system.
Heat Pumps Are Available in All Types of Air Conditioning Systems
If your home has central heating or air conditioning and air ducts, you can choose a heat pump version of your outdoor AC unit to enjoy hybrid home comfort. Any time you’re replacing an older AC unit or installing a new one, consider this upgrade. If you’re installing a ductless AC system for your home, choosing a heat pump model lets you start saving money immediately, especially if you currently use electric heating. For homes with packaged heating and air conditioning systems, adding this option when you replace an older system or installing a new system guarantees savings and outstanding comfort, year-round. You can’t, however, add this new technology to an existing system, in most cases.
Heat Pump Sales and Installation in Dallas, San Antonio and Houston
There are hundreds of authorized dealers who specialize in sales and installation of this equipment in all regions of Texas, from Mineral Wells, Annetta and Crowley to Rockwall, Duncanville and Flower Mound in the Dallas Fort Worth area, from Richmond, Splendora and Bobville to Hillcrest, Greatwood and Conroe in the Houston area, and from Christine, Hondo and Lytle to Natalia, Fentriss and Amphion in the San Antonio area.
Any time you need a new AC system, you owe it to yourself and your budget to discuss this new advanced technology with your contractor. Find out how much you can save by choosing this upgrade. Spending a little more for a hybrid system is a great way to ensure dramatic energy bill savings for many years down the road. Do the cost comparisons and make the decision that’s best for your family’s comfort and your wallet.