Air Conditioners vs. Heat Pumps

air conditioner vs. heat pumpNot too long ago, we wrote a post on Furnaces vs. Boilers, so we thought we’d write one on air conditioners vs. heat pumps. With summer quickly approaching, many homeowners may be wondering whether to invest in an air conditioner or a heat pump installation. There are advantages and disadvantages to both pieces of equipment – learn about their differences before you decide:


An air conditioner runs on a “vapor compression cycle,” which means it produces cold air by evaporating a refrigerant product (like Freon). It features a compressor that changes the refrigerant into a hot gas, which then travels through coils. As it travels, it becomes liquid, which evaporates into cold gas and absorbs the warm air indoors.

A heat pump can both cool and heat a home. When it cooling mode, it runs on a “reverse refrigeration cycle” and uses a condenser to simply remove the warm air from indoors and send it outdoors. In heating mode, it does the opposite.


Both air conditioners and heat pumps features filters that can collect dust and should be changed every 1-3 months.


Because a heat pump installation can be used to both heat and cool a home, which you choose can depend on where you live. Heat pumps are usually more efficient than air conditioners when it comes to cooling air, however, they are only efficient above 40 degrees. If the temperature is colder than that, your heat pump will have to consume more energy to heat your home.


Heat pumps can cost anywhere between $1,500 and $7,500 while a central air system costs anywhere between $1,000 and $3,200. When you consider costs, keep in mind that a heat pump can also act as a heater.

No matter which cooling unit you decide on, the experts at Tim Off can offer quality air conditioning services and can install your unit quickly and carefully. Contact us today for more information.

Timothy Off Heating Cooling Plumbing

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