What is the Difference Between a Furnace and a Heat Pump?

Most homeowners wonder if they should be using a furnace or a heat pump. Knowing the difference between the two will help you make an informed decision. The two temperature regulation related devices have significant differences in the way they operate. Some of the differences include:

Heat pump

A heat pump is used to heat a home using refrigerant. You can also use it to reduce your indoor temperature. It can be used both for heating and cooling. It runs on electricity. It is energy efficient, and also, it helps you heat your home without the production of byproducts.

Heating pumps are easy to maintain, and they function with an air conditioning system often by sharing the same ductwork. It is inexpensive to operate. Once you get a new pump, it comes with filters which help you in improving the quality of indoor air. Also, heat pumps are eco-friendly.


A furnace, on the other hand, operates by using natural gas, fuel oil, wood or coal to produce energy. Therefore unlike heat pumps, once you consider the cost of fuel used, it is more expensive to operate the furnace. Some furnaces produce residues and odors while others have a clean burning. For operation, a furnace needs a complete operating system which includes ductwork, a means of igniting the fuel and a blower. You will also need quality space to install it. Furnaces are used for heating a home, but they could also share a work duct with an air conditioning system.

Whether you need a heat pump or a furnace depends on the climate. A heat pump is ideal for warmer climates as it can help you in reducing the indoor temperature and provide warmth during the chilly days. A furnace on the other side is preferable for cold climates as it works by increasing indoor temperature.

Professional Heating Installation

Knowing these differences will help you understand what you need to install in your home. Here at Carolina Comfort, we perform installations and repair services to the residents of Columbia SC and surrounding areas. You can trust us for installation and maintenance of your heat pump or furnace. Contact us today to learn whether a heat pump or furnace is suitable for you before installation.