What’s the best heat pump system when money is tight? Depending on how much space you have to heat and cool, there are two options that stand out.
Air Source Heat Pumps for Large Spaces
If your home is average size or larger, a standard heat pump split system is probably the most cost-effective system to choose. It offers very affordable equipment costs for standard-efficiency models, those in the 13-14 SEER range. Putting together a system that includes a single-stage heat pump combined with a single-speed or multi-speed air handler, rather than a variable-speed model, can be surprisingly affordable.
All of the heat pump manufacturers, even top brands like Carrier and American Standard for example, build low-cost heat pumps designed for value-conscious consumers. For Carrier, it’s the Base Series heat pumps; for American Standard, it’s the Silver Series models. Get several estimates for affordable systems in order to find the lowest equipment prices and installation costs.
Window Unit Heat Pumps for Small Spaces
For very small homes, small apartments or additions, a window unit heat pump is hard to beat in terms of price. These units come in sizes from 12,000 BTU to 24,000 BTUs, and are designed to heat and cool up to about 750 square feet depending on the climate. Many of these units cost less than $1,000, and there are no installation costs if you do it yourself. Choosing to have a contractor install the unit in through a wall, an option with some models, will still cost less than installing a standard heat pump system.
When shopping for window unit heat pumps, make sure the heating is done by with heat pump technology. Some window air conditioners are equipped with a heating coil like those found in a space heater. While they may cost less than true window heat pumps, they will use up to 3 times more electricity when heating, producing very high utility bills. The extra you spend for a heat pump will quickly be made up to you in the form of lower heating bills.
Consider a Minisplit System
The cost of minisplit ductless heat pumps is becoming more competitive. While they probably won’t be your cheapest option for heating and cooling, it won’t hurt to get estimates on having one installed. With their higher efficiency, you will save money on utility bills, and that’s always something cost-conscious consumers are interested in doing.
Published In: Tech Articles
Keytags: budget, buying tips, sizing, tips
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