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Does a Heat Pump Cool as Well as an Air Conditioner?

Don’t let the term “heat pump” fool you – both air conditioning units and heat pumps can effectively cool down your commercial building. However, there are a few significant differences between the two options. Are you looking to upgrade or replace your air conditioning system? Depending on your overall needs, it might make sense to invest in a heat pump.

Air Conditioner vs. Heat Pump: Facts You Need to Know

Heat pumps are designed to provide both cooling and heating. They can reverse their airflow and, as a result, can pull warm air in from the outside, allowing heat to distribute indoors. Air conditioners, on the other hand, primarily function as cooling units. ACs are typically purchased in tandem with a furnace or rely on heat strips within the air handler for heating. 

While AC systems are pretty common, heat pumps have been gaining in popularity due to their versatility. Choosing between the two depends on your business heating and cooling needs. It surprises many Beaverton business owners to learn that commercial heat pumps are as effective as central air conditioning systems. However, selecting a heat pump over an AC does take some consideration.

Heat Pump vs. AC Cost

The costs between heat pumps and air conditioning vary. If you are deciding between the two, plan to have more upfront costs when purchasing and installing a heat pump. Extra initial costs aren’t always appealing for a business owner, but investing in a heat pump can save you long-term energy costs. A part of heat pumps efficiency comes from their design. Instead of heating or cooling the air through the use of gas or electricity, heat pumps transfer naturally occurring hot or cold air.

Heat Pump vs. Air Conditioner Efficiency

Heat pump vs. AC costsSince we are talking about efficiency, let’s delve in a bit more.

  • Cooling Facts: Both heat pumps and air conditioners utilize refrigerants to cool down a room, and they both have their own methods to transfer warm air from an indoor space to an outdoor space. Interestingly, both types of cooling solutions are nearly parallel in terms of efficiency and energy costs.
  • Heating Facts: In moderately cold climates, like parts of the Pacific Northwest, heat pumps can deliver energy-efficient heating using electricity. If temperatures dip below freezing, they could require more energy output to heat your commercial business. This challenge can be remedied by combining your heat pump with a furnace.
  • Energy Efficiency Ratings: Both air conditioners and heat pumps come in ENERGY STAR Certified models, with both high SEER and HSPF ratings.

Heat Pump vs. Air Conditioner Longevity

Business owners always want to know the longevity of their HVAC system. While there are many deciding factors regarding how long your unit will last, there are a few standards. Since heat pumps run continuously year-round, they tend to have a shorter lifespan than central AC systems. Air conditioning units get some time off in the winter when the furnace kicks into gear. A shorter lifespan might seem like a deal-breaker, but there are two things to keep in mind:

  1. The overall energy savings from a heat pump could offset the costs of a more frequent replacement.
  2. With standard maintenance from one of our NATE-Certified technicians, you can keep your commercial heat pump performing at its peak for years.

HVAC Services for Businesses in Beaverton

Contact AAA Heating and Cooling today if you need expert advice for your commercial property’s heating and cooling system. Our service professionals can replace your unit, service your system, and help you plan a maintenance schedule.