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The Electric Furnace vs. The Heat Pump


Not this kind of electric heater! You need a central electric furnace.

Florida isn’t exactly known for bone-chilling winters. It’s the warm winters that often draw people to live here in the first place. Because of the mild weather, we’re faced with a bit of a dilemma when it comes to home heating systems. We need to have heaters for the colder days, but also don’t want to sink too much money into running one. The standard types of heaters found in colder regions are often not ideal for our homes.

The All-Electric Home and Heating

The gas furnace is the central heater most commonly found in homes around the country, and even in Florida, it’s often the best option for a house that has a gas connection. Gas heaters are generally less costly to run than electrical heaters because natural gas is not as expensive as electricity. For a home that only uses electricity and doesn’t have a gas connection, the situation with a central heating system becomes trickier. There are two main choices: the heat pump or the electric furnace. We’re going to look at both to offer advice for making a choice.

The Electric Furnace

An electric furnace is a simple type of heating system. In fact, it’s simple enough with a small number of moving parts that it can often outlast other types of heating system by years. This longevity is one place where an electric furnace has an advantage over a gas furnace. An electric furnace is also less pricy to install upfront compared to both a gas furnace and a heat pump. Electric furnaces are flexible, and there’s pretty much always a unit available to match the comfort needs of a home.

On the other hand … an electric furnace can run up high operating costs. It takes a lot of electricity to generate the heat in the coils of an electric furnace that will warm up the air. This might not be serious a problem in the Florida climate, but it can make the difference when choosing between a furnace and a heat pump.

The Heat Pump

A heat pump is an air conditioning system that is able to reverse the direction it works so it can move heat into a home. The big benefits of a heat pump are that it is a two-in-one system that takes care of air conditioning, and it saves money in heating mode compared to an electric furnace. The difference in the cost to run one can be substantial.

On the other hand … you’ll only get the full benefit of a heat pump if you use it to replace both your heating and cooling system. If you don’t plan on replacing your AC as well as your heater, getting a heat pump just to provide heat is a waste of money.

If you need to choose between a heat pump or an electric furnace in Clearwater, FL, please don’t come to a decision on your own. Work with our heating experts. We many years of history helping homes in Florida, and we’ll provide you with the best advice for the type of heater that will best serve your household.

Balanced Air, Inc. has served the Tampa Bay Area since 1988. Speak to us today regarding your choices for home heating.

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