Heat pump systems are making their way into more homes each year, and for some excellent reasons. Heat pumps offer both heating and cooling functions in a single unit and are much more energy efficient at heating than standard electric furnaces, making them perfect for homes that don’t have a natural gas connection. The warmth heat pumps deliver in winter is less stuffy than the warmth from furnaces, providing ideal comfort throughout a home.
But heat pumps do have some limitations. Because they must absorb heat from the outside during the winter, they can struggle if the temperature falls to extremely low levels. There’s always some heat in the air, no matter how cold. But when the outdoor temperature drops too far below freezing, it forces heat pumps to work much harder to extract the available heat. Suddenly, the energy efficient performance of heat pumps is much less than it was.