When my husband and I had our house built, we made the mistake of relying on the general contractor for everything.
We should have realized that he isn’t knowledgeable in heating and cooling systems.
He did a great job of building walls, installing windows and putting on the roof. Unfortunately, he recommended that we install a heat pump to handle temperature control. When he explained the many benefits of a heat pump, it sounded perfect. We liked the idea of having only one component to provide both heating and cooling. Because a heat pump runs on electricity, there is no combustion process. This eliminates concerns over carbon monoxide, hot surfaces and fumes. The system is quite environmentally friendly as well as quiet, clean and safe. It works just like an air conditioner in the summer and does a great job of cooling the house. The heat pump is effective at getting rid of excess humidity and filtering contaminants out of the air. We have no problem with it until the worst weather of winter. When the outside temperature drops below freezing, there’s simply not enough ambient heat in the air. The heat pump can’t keep up and our house is downright chilly. We end up setting up space heaters. The space heaters look ugly and aren’t all that effective. After spending a significant amount of money on the purchase and installation of the heat pump, we are reluctant to invest in an additional heating system. However, in the area where we live, there are months when the temperature is below freezing.