Installing a heat pump can make a huge difference in what you pay for heating and cooling your home. A heat pump will replace both the furnace and air conditioner/central air unit. It may be costly to install, with the national average falling between $4,000 and $7,000, but it will save you considerable money in energy costs. Consider the following factors before installing a heat pump:
Size of Your Home
The biggest single factor is determining the price of your heat pump is the size of your house. The size needed is determined by the square footage of your home. The larger your heat pump, the more you will pay for it. Do not try to cut costs by installing a larger pump. What you might gain in savings will be lost quickly in efficiency and higher energy costs.
Type of Heat Pump
There are two main types of heat pumps: geothermal heat pumps and air-source heat pumps. A geothermal heat pump draws the heat from the ground, while the air-source type pulls the heat from the air outside.
Geothermal heat pumps will cost more to install. However, maintenance is generally less since they are installed underground and protected from the elements. When you compare the installation cost to what it will save you in energy bills and maintenance, a geothermal system pays for itself twice as fast as an air source system. Air-source heat pumps are less expensive than geothermal heat systems and optimal in cold and mild temperatures.
The cost of installing a heat pump will be more expensive for the geothermal type than air-source as it needs to be installed underground. The difficultly associated with the excavation of the ground will affect the installation costs. Make sure to talk to a few installation pros to get a number of bids, as this installation can vary quite a bit in price. For example, drilling through a concrete slab or driveway to install the heat pump will be more expensive than no excavation.
Heat Pump Tax Credit
Installing an energy-efficient heating and cooling system run by a heat pump may qualify you for several federal tax credits now being offered. There is also a tax credit for using a renewable system like geothermal heat. Taking advantage of these will dramatically decrease heat pump installation costs.
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