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Is a Heat Pump an Efficient Heating & Cooling Option in Maryland?

Posted on: September 24, 2018

In recent years, heat pumps have been lauded for both their efficiency, as well as their efficacy. An all-in-one, year-round comfort solution that offers an excellent investment is hard to beat. However, if you’re considering a heat pump installation for your Montgomery County home, you’ve likely spent some time looking around and learning. And in that time you probably came across one fairly noteworthy caveat of these systems: they work better in some locations than they do in others.

This knowledge leaves you with one important question: Is a heat pump the right choice for your Maryland home? Will it work well, and will you get the full benefit of its efficiency? Follow along with GAC Services while we delve into the question a little deeper.

Understanding the Limits of an Air-Source Heat Pump

If you’re completely new to heat pumps, the important thing to understand is that they utilize smaller amounts of energy in order to pump heat. They can pump heat either in forward or in reverse, meaning they can pump heat into your home, or out of it. During the summer this process is aided by a somewhat standard refrigerant loop, and in the winter, the system draws energy out of the outdoors and pulls heat in.

Knowing this, the question changes a little bit and becomes: At what point can a heat pump no longer draw heat into the home effectively?

The answer to this is well-known: at around 20-25 degrees Fahrenheit, the system begins to struggle, as there is too little heat to draw into the home. In modern heat pumps, this is addressed by an auxiliary heating system—typically one that runs on electricity—that will kick in to make up for the heating loss, maintaining a comfortable temperature even in freezing weather. An even better solution is to take advantage of a hybrid heat pump, or one that utilizes a gas furnace as its supplementary heat, which will be both more reliable and more cost-efficient.

Geothermal Heat Pumps Circumvent Winter Issues

A geothermal heat pump, or GHP, operates mostly in the same way as a standard heat pump. As its source, however, it uses the ground instead of outdoor air, which provides a far more stable medium—one that is unaffected by outdoor temperatures. This means a geothermal system is always consistent, which explains why it can reach efficiency ratings that exceed even normal heat pump systems, which are already a fair margin above most of the competition.

Is a Heat Pump the Right Choice in Maryland?

Each and every HVAC option provides unique advantages and disadvantages, so it is ideal to speak with a professional about what works best for your preferences and needs. That said, heat pumps (both air-source and geothermal) work exceptionally well in Maryland! Our extremes aren’t extreme enough to impact the performance of the system, and heat pumps are very energy-efficient and cost-effective to operate.

Some of the most noteworthy advantages of a heat pump include:

  • Reduced heating and cooling costs
  • A longer operational lifespan when appropriately maintained
  • A heating and cooling solution in one system
  • Even heating and cooling, minimizing cold or warm spots

Heat Pump Contractors in Maryland

Interested in the potential advantages of a heat pump? If you’re a homeowner in Montgomery, Howard, or Frederick County then GAC Services can help! Our technicians are proficient in the service of both air and ground source heat pumps, and with our knowledge and training, we can help you decide whether a heat pump is the right choice for your home.

Contact us online now to schedule service!

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