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The Benefits of Heat Pumps: Why You Should Consider Making the Switch

Jun 13

Why You Should Be Replacing Your Furnace With a Heat Pump


Recently, you may have come across marketing campaigns and articles promoting the transition from fossil-fuel burning space heating and cooling systems to heat pumps. But what exactly are the benefits behind heat pumps? Today, heat pumps offer improved performance, reliability, and versatility compared to their predecessors. As Registered Energy Advisors, the Energy Werx team has gained valuable insights from conducting numerous home energy evaluations. Here are the top reasons why installing a heat pump is a smart choice, including some lesser-known advantages.


Reason #1 – Enhanced Comfort:

Gone are the days when heat pumps struggled to keep up with heating demands during frigid winters. Modern cold-climate heat pump technology can maintain full output even in temperatures as low as -25°C and also excel at matching the load requirements throughout the year. By utilizing inverter-driven compressors, they can precisely adjust the heating or cooling output, ensuring consistent and optimal indoor temperatures. In contrast, traditional single-stage furnaces deliver a fixed output, which often results in fluctuating temperatures and slight overshooting or undershooting of desired settings.


Another remarkable comfort feature of heat pumps is their ability to provide air conditioning during the summer months. Heat pumps transfer heat between the inside and outside air. Using a reversing valve, they can reverse this heat transfer, effectively cooling the indoor space. This capability is particularly advantageous in humid climates, where humidity levels remain high even when the temperature differential is not significant. By offering superior dehumidifying and extended run times, heat pumps ensure better comfort and a refreshing indoor environment.


Reason #2 – Cost Savings:

One of the primary motivations for homeowners to switch to heat pumps is the potential for significant heating cost reductions. Today's heat pumps are highly efficient, operating 2-3 times more efficiently than even high-efficiency gas furnaces. Instead of creating heat through combustion or electric resistance, heat pumps transfer heat from one location to another. This approach consumes considerably less energy. For example, while a typical furnace relies on a 1650°C flame to produce roughly 51°C air, a heat pump achieves the same outcome using lower temperatures resulting in reduced energy use and operational costs.


It's worth mentioning that the energy consumption of an aging furnace is also influenced by the power consumption of its blower fan, responsible for circulating air through the ductwork. Older single-stage air handlers tend to push more air than necessary, resulting in wasted power. However, most new heat pumps come equipped with electrically commutated motors (ECM motors) that adjust their speed to optimize efficiency, leading to substantial reductions in electricity usage.


Concerns about the high cost of heat pump installation are often unfounded. Currently, government grants and rebates, such as the Canada Greener Homes Grant, make installing a heat pump more affordable than replacing an aging furnace. By consulting with an Energywerx Energy Advisor, you can explore the specific grants available in your area and ensure you maximize the available funding when upgrading your mechanical systems.


Reason #3 – Environmentally Friendly Choice:

Switching to a heat pump allows you to significantly reduce the carbon emissions associated with heating and cooling your home. By harnessing Canada's clean power grid, you can contribute to the national effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In 2019, buildings ranked as the third-largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in Canada, with space and water heating accounting for a significant portion of those emissions in residential buildings. Heat pumps stand out as an energy-efficient option, consuming far less energy compared to other alternatives on the market.


As building codes increasingly prioritize Net-Zero Energy Ready homes, the role of space heating and cooling systems becomes crucial in reducing overall electrical consumption. While a well-designed building envelope is essential, the HVAC system typically represents the largest energy load in residential properties. By choosing the most efficient technology available, such as heat pumps, homeowners can reduce their reliance on renewable energy systems like solar panels. In the face of climate change, embracing heat pump technology presents an opportunity for individuals to make an impact on their environmental footprint.


The switch to heat pumps offers a multitude of benefits for homeowners looking to upgrade their mechanical systems. Whether you seek improved comfort, financial savings, or a greener home, heat pumps provide a comprehensive solution. To ensure a successful installation and long-term functionality, it is advisable to work with a reputable and experienced contractor. Heat pump technology continues to evolve rapidly, proving itself as a reliable choice for heating and cooling in various climate zones.



Consulting with a friendly and knowledgeable Energywerx BC Energy Advisor will enable you to make informed decisions and take advantage of any available rebates.

By embracing heat pump technology, you can transform your home into a more comfortable, energy-efficient, and environmentally friendly space.



Serving the Lower Mainland, Vancouver & Vancouver Island, Kootenay Mountain and the Okanagan, BC.