Heat Pumps vs. Air Conditioners

The popularity of heat pumps has risen significantly in recent years due to the many practical, convenient, and environmentally friendly benefits that it provides. They combine heating and cooling capability into one unit to make temperature control easy. Many people wonder what the difference is between heat pumps and air conditioners. If you live in an area with a moderate climate, a heat pump may be right for you. Air conditioners, however, are a good choice when paired with a furnace to handle winter heating. 


Both heat pumps and air conditioners use compressed refrigerant to gather heat from inside your home as air passes over the coil in the air handlers and transfer it outside. Both systems, in basic terms, move heat from inside your home to the outdoors. Air conditioners pump heat out of a home, which is exactly what a heat pump does when operating in cooling mode. They are essentially the same when operating in cooling mode, with no significant difference in operation, efficiency, or energy costs.


Heat pumps and air conditioners are basically identical in cooling mode, but the opposite is true for heating mode. Air conditioners do not provide heating. Heat pumps, on the other hand, absorb heat energy from outside air through a reversing valve in the outdoor unit and transfers the heat inside the home, releasing it into the air. Air conditioners are often paired with a furnace for heating. 

Which System Should You Choose?

When choosing a system to heat and cool your home, you should consider a few points. Consider the cost to purchase and install, understanding the total costs to install a system that can heat and cool your home properly. You will want to consider energy efficiency, so if you want a higher efficiency model, be sure to select one that has been ENERGY STAR® certified. Longevity is another important factor; AC units tend to last longer than heat pumps due to the fact that heat pumps are used year-round, while air conditioners are used much less during colder months. 

How Can Joseph Frederick & Sons Help You?

As a Carrier Factory Authorized Dealer, Joseph Frederick & Sons is specifically qualified to handle the complex and sophisticated installation of your new system. With a focus on customer service, we strive to facilitate your project, completing timely and accurate work at fair prices. Contact us for all your air conditioning or heat pump needs!