My Heat Pump Runs All Day and Night


The question most homeowners ask themselves is whether their heat pump should run all the time or be switched on only when the need arises. If you have been running on a furnace then replacing it with a heat pump can make you have such questions. Most furnaces are oversized and this means they don’t have to run all the time to heat up your home. However, the heat pump is designed just to suit your indoor heating and cooling needs and as such it has to run all through.

Heat pumps are energy efficient and they cannot overheat or overcool your home in the same manner a large furnace would do. They use less energy and the more they run, the cheaper your heating costs. The best way to look at this is to visualize the mode of operation of the heat pump vis-à-vis your furnace. A heat pump simply moves heat while a furnace makes heat. The movement of heat happens at a much lower cost than the making of heat. This is why it makes a lot of sense to run the heat pump all day and night so as to maximize the amount of heating time without raising your energy bills.

During winter, the heat pump gathers heat from the surrounding environment and pushes it into your home. During summer, the reverse happens and the indoor heat is pumped out of your home and dispersed to the surroundings. Every dollar you spend to get a single unit of heat in an electric furnace is equivalent to almost 3.5 times the amount of heat you can generate through a heat pump.

Therefore, the reason why your heat pump runs nonstop is because it is sized to match your air conditioning needs. This means when outdoor temperatures clock above 30 degrees, the heat pump will run on and off just like a normal furnace but when the outdoor temperatures fluctuate between 20 and 30 degrees, the heat pump will reach a balance point where the amount of heat required by the home is equivalent to the amount supplied by the heat pump. At this point, the heat pump will run all the time.

When the outdoor temperatures dip below the balance point, the heat pump will still continue to run nonstop and the backup electric coils will supplement the heat generated by the heat pump. However, you should note that the backup heat from the coils is more expensive and that is why you should allow your heat pump to run always.

Because of the fact that a heat pump runs throughout, the chances of it breaking down are very high hence the need for regular servicing and maintenance. Always check whether your heat pump is working properly so as to shield yourself from the backup furnace which is expensive to run.