Heating your home to maintain a comfortable indoor temperature is unavoidable for several months a year in northwest Arkansas. Fortunately there are ways to keep energy consumption and heating bills at a minimum, such as programming your heat pump thermostat.
Heating With a Heat Pump
Heat pumps regulate the temperature in your home gradually, without the quick temperature swings of a forced-air furnace. When heating temperatures are adjusted by two degrees or less, the heat pump works gradually to reach and maintain that new setting.
When temperatures are adjusted to a higher setting, of three degrees or more, most heat pump systems kick on their emergency heating system, usually an electric resistance heating element, similar to a large toaster. This auxiliary heat helps the heat pump reach the desired temperature in a short time frame.
Unfortunately, the electric backup heating is far less energy efficient than your heat pump, resulting in higher energy bills with frequent use. You can address this problem by programming your heat pump thermostat.
Programming Your Heat Pump Thermostat
Many heating systems these days use programmable thermostats that are little more than alarm clocks, adjusting temperatures based on programmed time slots. These devices generally aren’t heat pump specific and can, like manual adjustments, cause the backup heating element to kick in until the programmed temperature is reached.
Make sure you have the right tools for the job. Heat pump thermostats almost always have the words “heat pump” right in the name of the device, and are designed to gradually raise to the programmed temperature one degree at a time. That means, for example, a heat pump thermostat with an overnight setting of 65 degrees and a daytime setting of 70 degrees calculates what time the system needs to start working to gradually reach 70 degrees by the designated time.
Additionally, not every heat pump thermostat is compatible with every heat pump system. Before you buy and/or install a programmable thermostat, make sure it will work with your heat pump.
Get professional help programming your heat pump thermostat from Paschal Heat, Air & Geothermal. We’ve been serving northwest Arkansas for 45 years.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Springdale, Arkansas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about heat pump thermostats and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
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