Gas Furnace vs Heat Pump: Everything You Need to Know Before Deciding

Written by Brittany Allen

Whether you’re looking to update your current heating solution or wondering if there’s a better option, learning the differences between furnaces and heat pumps is a great way to arm yourself with the information you need to make the right choice. Home heating solutions are expensive no matter which option you choose, so selecting the right one is essential. Not to mention, warming your home in those cold winter months is vital to your comfort, and you will want to be sure you have the best option for your specific situation. 

What is a Furnace?

Whether oil or gas, a furnace is a heating solution that burns the fuel to heat the air and distributes it throughout the home. They create a legendary heat that is cozier and warmer than other heating options. 

Pros and Cons of a Furnace

Since furnaces create a heat that warms your bones, they are best for colder climates where they’ll have to fight off harsh winter weather. The long and harsh winters of New England states make these a popular choice. However, they cost more to operate than heat pumps in these colder climates, and the price to run them can vary depending on gas or oil prices. In addition, if you don’t already, you’ll either have to run gas lines to your home or have an oil tank where you can get oil delivered to your home. And although carbon monoxide is a risk, these systems are safe when regularly inspected and installed by professionals.

What is a Heat Pump?

A heat pump works both as a heating system and an air conditioner. In the winter, heat pumps bring in air from the outside and warm it up to circulate it throughout your home. Then in the summer, it takes the hot air in your home and pushes it outside. 

Pros and Cons of a Heat Pump

Heat pumps run on electricity and are not as effective as furnaces when warming up the air within your home. However, their ability to also work as air conditioners makes them valuable in other ways. A heat pump is a perfect solution if your winters are cool but not frigid. However, they’ll struggle if you endure long, brutal winters. 

Heat pumps require less space in your home, but they are noisier than furnaces. A new heat pump is much cheaper than a new furnace, and there is no risk of carbon monoxide leaking into your home. 

Deciding on which option is best for you will be significantly determined by your specific situation. Also, if you don’t already have gas lines or an oil tank, adding a furnace to your home will be a significant investment. But the heat will keep you toasty in the winter! So without harsh winters to combat, a heat pump might be your best bet, and it’s a two-for-one with its air conditioning abilities!

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