Replacing Your Furnace With a Heat Pump: What You Need to Know

Are heat pumps a good replacement for furnaces in Atlantic Canada?

Heat pumps are becoming increasingly common in the Atlantic provinces, but there are still a lot of misconceptions about them and how they work. If you’re an Atlantic Canadian homeowner considering replacing your oil furnace with a heat pump, there are a few things that you should know so you can make an informed decision.

Heat Pumps and Furnaces: How Do They Work?

Both heat pumps and furnaces are common methods of heating in Atlantic Canadian homes, with the number of installed heat pumps rising rapidly. But if you’re currently considering replacing a furnace with a heat pump, you should be aware of some differences in how the two different heating sources function.

The biggest difference is that furnaces burn fuel to create their own heat, while heat pumps just move heat from one place to another. Heat pumps work a lot like water pumps do; where water naturally tends to flow downwards and water pumps lift it back up, heat tends to flow from warmer areas to cooler areas, and heat pumps reverse this flow.

It takes much more energy to generate heat than it does to move it from one place to another. This means that heat pumps are able to warm a house with much more energy efficiency than a furnace.

This increased efficiency is what makes heat pumps so attractive to homeowners in the Atlantic provinces. Using less energy to heat your home means that you can potentially save huge amounts of money on your monthly heating bills.

Can I Replace a Furnace With a Heat Pump?

Because furnaces and heat pumps can use the same kind of air ducts to move air through your home, it’s a relatively straightforward process to replace your furnace with a heat pump. Heat pumps are a reliable method of home heating, and some models can work when it is still as cold as -27° C outside.

This means that it’s very rare that it will ever be cold enough in Atlantic Canada for a heat pump to not work effectively. However, some homeowners choose not to replace their furnaces. Instead, they install one or more ductless heat pumps in their homes to use as their primary heat source, and keep the furnace as a backup heat source as insurance for extremely cold days.

How Much Does it Cost to Replace a Furnace With a Heat Pump?

While there is some variation in upfront cost, new heat pumps on average are roughly the same price as a new oil or gas furnace. However, this price is usually offset by various rebates that make them significantly more affordable. For example, most provincial governments offer significant incentives to replace oil or gas furnaces with heat pumps because they are so much better for the environment.

Additionally, the reduced operating cost means that most homeowners in Atlantic Canada will see monthly savings that will pay for the cost of the heat pump fairly quickly—often in as little as 2-3 years. These savings stack up quickly, especially compared with the rising and unpredictable cost of heating oil.

Replace Your Furnace With a Heat Pump

If you’re considering replacing your furnace with a heat pump, the first step is to talk to an authorized Daikin dealer near you. You can book a no-obligation in-home assessment so that our product experts can inspect your home, provide you with a recommendation for the best heat pump for your home construction and family’s needs, and give you an estimate of how much it would cost to heat your home with that heat pump.

For more information about the differences between heat pumps and furnaces, check out Heat Pumps vs Furnaces: Which is Better?