What’s the Difference Between Central AC and a Heat Pump?
Many people tend to be confused by how a heat pump operates, but it’s actually very similar to air conditioning. Like air conditioning, heat pumps operate by moving heat from one place to another. In the summer, heat pumps take heat from the air inside your home and transfer it, via a refrigerant line, outside, cooling you down.
The biggest difference between air conditioners and heat pumps is that unlike ACs, heat pumps have two settings: cooling and heating. In heating mode, the process is reversed, and heat is absorbed from the outdoors (yep, even very cold air contains heat) and brought inside to warm your indoor air.
So, unlike air conditioners, heat pumps can not only keep you cool in the summer, but they can also keep you warm in the winter—they’re a year-round solution!
The Different Kinds of Heat Pumps
There are two main types of air source heat pumps. Ducted heat pumps connect to your home’s central ductwork, in the same way that central AC or a furnace does. Ductless heat pumps, often called mini-splits, are different: the indoor component of a mini-split is installed directly in the room you’re looking to condition. These cassettes are usually installed right on your walls and can be operated independently, giving you maximum control over the comfort settings in the different rooms of your house!
Heat Pumps vs. Air Conditioners: Which Is Right for You?
There are a number of pros and cons if you’re choosing between heat pumps and central air conditioning. Heat pumps for Long Island homes tend to have higher upfront installation costs than just AC, but you’ll be able to benefit from energy efficient operation year-round, instead of just during the cooling season. Heat pumps and central AC units come with different efficiency ratings, depending on the model and manufacturer, but you can find comparable units at all efficiency levels. Meanwhile, heat pumps are significantly more efficient than even top-of-the-line furnaces and boilers.
Looking to find the right solution for your home? Talk to Home Efficiency Experts—we’ve established ourselves as a leading, whole home contractor team on Long Island—not by trying to upsell you on the most expensive products and services, but by taking the time to understand the unique needs of your home and finding the best solution for each customer.
How to Improve the Efficiency of Your Heat Pumps (or Any HVAC System)
Many homeowners are under the impression that, in order to save money on cooling costs, they need to upgrade their HVAC unit to a more efficient model. While that is often true, it’s not the whole story! No matter how efficient your heat pump or AC is, you’ll still be wasting lots of money if you’re losing that energy as a result of poor insulation and air leaks in your home.
At Home Efficiency Experts, we’re both an HVAC and home performance expert, which means we can perform home insulation tests before installing new HVAC equipment to help make sure the insulation in your Long Island, NY home is enough to maximize the efficiency of your heating and cooling system. As a participating contractor with NYSERDA, we can provide a free energy audit for your NY home to determine its current efficiency.
Make Your Home’s Heat Pump Upgrade More Affordable With PSEG Rebates!
Because heat pumps and mini splits are so energy efficient, utility companies like PSEG Long Island have rebates in 2021 to encourage homeowners to upgrade. Home Efficiency Experts is a participating Home Comfort Partner, which means that you can save thousands in rebates when you schedule a mini split or heat pump installation with our team of heating and air conditioning contractors!