HVAC can be a pretty complicated field, which can make it difficult to find a heating and cooling solution that is perfect for your home. Fortunately, there are actually certain appliances that can be used to simultaneously satisfy both needs at once: heat pumps.
How do heat pumps work?
In short, a heat pump is like an air conditioner that can be reversed. Not only can they take the heat from the air in your home and dump it outside, but they can also draw heat from outside your home to warm your home during the cold winter months.
This is achieved through a variety of different means, with different types of heat pumps using different mechanisms.
What is a geothermal heat pump?
One type of heat pump is the geothermal heat pump, which operates by drawing heat from the ground beneath your home. These heat pumps are often fairly difficult and expensive to install, but they more than make up for it by offering amazing efficiency during even the coldest winters.
Like most heat pumps and air conditioners, geothermal units rely on a ventilation system to move air from one room to another. This means that you need a functioning ventilation system if you want to get the most out of your geothermal unit.
What is a ductless heat pump?
To contrast, a ductless heat pump does not require a ventilation system. Instead, it uses a central controller unit and several nodes throughout your home. The central unit does all of the heavy lifting and helps transfer heat in and out of your home, while the nodes helps connect that central unit to each of the rooms that you want to heat or cool.
When is a geothermal heat pump better?
If you live somewhere that gets very cold in winter, then a geothermal unit is often the best option. Since it draws heat from the ground rather than the air, it has a much more potent source of energy when the temperature drops below freezing. While there is almost no heat in the air in the dead of winter, the ground is still full of energy.
When is a ductless heat pump better?
If you don't have a great ventilation system set up, then a ductless heat pump can help you get heating and cooling without needing to invest in a ventilation system. In some cases, you might not have a ventilation system at all, whereas in other cases, your ventilation system might be old and unreliable. In both cases, a ductless system can offer you the perfect solution.