Tag Archives: Heating System

Should You Install a Furnace or Heat Pump in Your Desert Home?

Installing a Furnace in Your Desert Home
If your heating system is showing signs of wear and tear and needs repair from an HVAC repair company in Gilbert, you have a couple of options when it comes to replacing your old unit.

Your first option is a traditional furnace, which you might have installed in the home now. Furnaces are responsible for heating the home using fuel and are controlled by a thermostat. The drawback is that they consume a lot of energy.

The second option is a heat pump, which is designed to keep the home’s temperature comfortable and consistent. In the winter, warm air is brought in, sucked into the heat pump and circulated throughout the home. In the summer, warm air is pushed back outdoors.

Since winters don’t get particularly cold in Arizona, heat pumps have been a popular choice for dessert homeowners. But even in cold-weather states, air-source heat pumps are becoming more common due to their efficiency and cost-effectiveness.

In this post, we will explore the major differences between furnaces and heat pumps and which one is best for your Gilbert home.

How are Furnaces and Heat Pumps Different?

Furnaces and heat pumps have the same goal of keeping the home warm and comfy during the winter, but they achieve so differently.

  • Heat pumps don’t manufacture the heat they distribute. Instead, the heat is found from the outside climate and brought into the home. Furnaces, on the other hand, generate their own heat using oil, gas or electricity, which is more necessary in cold-weather climates.
  • Furnaces blow out heat, which can create hotspots in the home. Heat pumps do a better job of maintaining an even temperature. Some people prefer the warm blasts of air, while others prefer a more steady temperature.
  • Some people don’t like the lukewarm temperature that they get with an air-source heat pump. On average, heat pumps deliver air between 90 and 100 degrees, whereas furnaces get up to 120 to 125 degrees.

Is One Better than the Other?

There’s a reason why HVAC repair services in Gilbert offer both furnaces and heat pumps – some homeowners prefer one over the other! Pros and cons exist for each heating system, so it’s difficult to generalize and say that one is better than the other. Your best bet is to speak with a professional who can provide you with more personalized information.

Before you schedule an appointment, here are a few basic things to know that might make your decision easier.

  • Can you add a gas line? If you can’t add a gas line to your home, then the choice is an easy one: get a heat pump. A heat pump uses electricity. If you can add a line, you’ll need to factor in this cost.
  • How warm do you want your home? We mentioned above that heat pumps feel more lukewarm, which will be more uncomfortable as the temperatures drop. This isn’t common in the desert, but still, something to consider.
  • What are energy costs in your area? You’ll see a lot of generalizations regarding the costs of heat pumps and furnaces, but the real answer comes down to what you pay for gas and electricity. These rates vary from month to month, and heat pumps will get expensive if they need to pull air from a secondary heating unit. In general, though, heat pumps can save upwards of 30% off your electric bill.

Before you make an investment in a new heating system, give Bruce’s Air Conditioning and Heating a call! Our licensed and certified technicians are more than happy to provide you with a solid recommendation based on your needs and budget.

Photo Credit: Franco Giovanella

Deciding On A Heat Pump? Here’s Everything You Need To Know

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Lady On Laptop-Benefits Of A Heat PumpIf you live in an area with relatively moderate winters, you have a number of practical options to consider for your home heating system. Top among these options is the heat pump, a device that draws heat from other sources instead of generating it internally like a furnace.

Discover everything you need to know when it comes to using a heat pump for your home heating including features and benefits.

Features And Benefits To Consider When Deciding On A Heat Pump

Here are some of the key points to consider when determining the suitability of a heat pump for your heating needs.

Furnaces vs. Heat Pumps

Furnaces are direct heat generation devices. When you turn them on, they burn a fuel source (most often natural gas or propane) or run electricity to an internal component called a heating element.

In contrast, heat pumps are heat transfer devices. When you turn them on, they pull heat from a nearby location and transfer that heat to your home’s interior with the help of a blower. Most heat pumps extract the heat they use from the outside air. This may sound counterintuitive, but it works quite well unless you live in a region with truly frigid winters. A heat pump may also extract heat from a geothermal source such as the ground or any nearby body of water.

Ducted vs. Ductless Heat Pumps

Ductless Split System Heat PumpIn most cases, heat pumps transfer heat to your household’s interior through a connected network of ducts, which run through unfinished indoor space to room openings called registers.

However, a specific type of heat pump, called a ductless mini-split heat pump, does not rely on a ducting network. Instead, houses with this type of device have small, individual heating units installed in various rooms. Tubes called conduits run from these units directly to the outside of the home before meeting up at the heat pump. As a rule, ductless units rely on outside air as their heat transfer source.

Features That Improve Heating Performance

Some heat pumps are designed with features that significantly improve their efficiency or other aspects of their overall performance. Examples of these desirable features include blowers that can run at two or more speeds, the ability to adjust the heat pump’s heating capacity as needed, and backup burners that can keep the incoming air at an acceptable temperature during cold snaps. A ductless mini-split heat pump also lets you improve efficiency and performance by setting up separately controlled temperature zones inside your home.

The Potential For Energy Savings

Heat Pump Energy SavingsSince heat pumps don’t generate their own heat, they can potentially save you a lot of money in energy costs. In fact, in a best case scenario, you can save up to 75 percent on your heating bills if you rely on a heat pump instead of a traditional furnace or electric furnace.

Heat pumps can also save you money because they typically operate more efficiently than furnaces. Compared to an electric furnace, use of a heat pump can shave a third or more from your monthly operating costs.

Still Unsure Of What Type Of Heating System You Should Get For Your Home?

If you’re still not sure which heater is best for you and your family, call the experts at Bruce’s Air Conditioning & Heating. Our experienced technicians can help you choose the best unit for your needs.

Call For A Free Estimate On A New Unit Today!

Does Your Home Have A Heat Loss Problem?

Does Your Home Have A Heat Loss ProblemDuring cold winter months, you are perfectly aware that heating costs make up the bulk of your electricity or gas bill.

Consequently you want your HVAC system to work as efficiently and as effortlessly as possible, so you can enjoy the warmth it produces without worrying yourself to death about how rapidly the dial on your energy meter is spinning.

Unfortunately, wintertime heat loss is a common source of waste in most homes. Even well-constructed buildings are far from airtight and it is amazing how much heat can escape into the open air if sources of leakage go unnoticed.

As winter has progressed have you noticed your energy costs rising? Do your bills seem out-of-proportion in comparison to friends and neighbors? Do you notice your furnace kicking on and off more frequently than in the past? Are there certain rooms in your home that seem noticeably colder than others?

All of these indicate you have a heat loss problem and that it is significant enough to be having a measurable impact.

Learn the sources of heat loss problems.

Identifying The Sources Of Heat Loss Trouble

HeatAir leaks in homes can happen just about anywhere. The best way to detect them is to contact your local energy company and ask them to send a consultant to your home to perform a heat loss audit (this service may be offered for free). If they can’t or won’t send someone you can always hire a private home energy auditor, who will most likely do it for a relatively small fee.

In the meantime, you can look around on your own to see what you can spot. Here are a few things to check for:

Doors And Windows

Cracks and spaces here are fairly easy to find. Just stand on the other side, feel around the perimeter of your doors and windows and see if streams of warm air are escaping (or cool air is coming in). It can usually be fairly easy to fix door and window gaps with caulk or weather stripping that you can buy and apply yourself.

Other locations where gaps may be causing air leakage include electrical outlets, plumbing cuts beneath sinks and dryer vents on outside walls. All can be plugged with caulk or foam sealers (just make sure to remove the foam sealer before using your dryer).

Filters And Vents

HVAC units won’t move air properly if filters are clogged or vents plugged or blocked. It’s fairly easy to check for this and to take action to combat it, either by cleaning where you can or buying a replacement air filter when it’s dirty.

Attic Heat Loss

This can be traced to inadequate insulation, unsealed wall partitions that channel heat from below or even poor attic ventilation.


For the most part you won’t be able to tell if the insulation in your walls, floors and ceilings is adequate or has somehow been compromised. Bad insulation is a big source of leakage, however, and it is one problem a home heat loss audit can help you uncover.

Heat Loss Is Your Loss

Heat loss will make you colder, cost you money and put undue stress on your furnace to the point where its life span may be reduced.

If You’ve Noticed Heat Loss, Call The Heating Experts

Have you noticed heat loss in your home or problems with your heater? Contact the heating and cooling experts at Bruce’s Air Conditioning & Heating. Our licensed and professional technicians will thoroughly inspect your heater and home and provide a viable solution to your problem.

Trust the industry experts and call us today! And don’t forget to “Follow Us” for future Post and Information

Heat Pump Freezing Up: What Do You Do to deal with a Frozen Heat Pump?

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Heat Pump Freezing Up-What To DoYour heat pump can freeze up any time of the year, not just during the cold winter months. Under normal operation, frost develops on the outdoor coils. When the frost begins to build up, the unit automatically shifts into defrost mode to melt the frost.

If this defrosting mechanism malfunctions, ice can build up to a point that the heat pump freezes and ceases to function.

Learn what you can do and when a qualified HVAC tech is needed.

What You Can Do If Your Heat Pump Is Freezing Up

Sometimes the unit itself is not the problem. One of the first things you can do if you notice ice buildup is to see if the water is coming from an external source. A leaky gutter above the unit or freezing rain can cause ice buildup that blocks airflow past the coils.

Blocked air vents, clogged air filters, and debris build up around the unit may restrict airflow. Clear away all debris surrounding your outside unit and move any items inside the home that are blocking your air vents. Change the filters every few weeks or months according to the manufacturer’s specifications.

What An HVAC Tech Should Do If The Heat Pump Freezes

A qualified HVAC technician can troubleshoot a more complicated problem with your frozen heat pump.
In some cases, water accumulates inside the condenser because of the slab underneath the unit shifts or settles. A technician can offer solutions for improving drainage.

Technicians can check the unit’s automatic defrost controls for faulty or worn components. Repairs may include replacing a faulty sensor, thermostat, defrost relay or reversing valve.

Your heat pump is vulnerable to icing if the refrigerant level drops too low. If this is the case, the technician will have to determine the source of the leak and repair it before refilling the system with refrigerant. Technicians must be certified by the EPA to work with refrigerants, so this is definitely a task you cannot do without help from the professionals.

Rely On The Heating And Cooling Experts

Ice build-up on your outdoor unit is the most obvious sign when your heat pump freezes up in winter or any time of the year. You can rely on the experts at Bruce’s Air Conditioning & Heating to offer effective and affordable solutions for all your residential HVAC system maintenance and repairs.

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What Regular Maintenance Do Air Conditioning And Heating Systems Need?

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Regular HVAC Maintenance-Bruces Air ConditioningRegular, as well as annual HVAC maintenance is necessary for keeping HVAC systems functioning effectively and efficiently. Discover the regular maintenance that air conditioning and heating systems need.


Regular HVAC Maintenance Services

The following are the different types of HVAC maintenance services needed.


General HVAC Maintenance

All HVAC systems have certain similar components such as condensate drains and pans, control systems, thermostats and parts that require lubrication. The regular maintenance of all HVAC systems should encompass the cleaning and lubrication of moving HVAC components, check-up and unclogging of condensate pans, as well as repair and or replacement of worn out parts. Thermostat settings and HVAC controls should also be checked and set accordingly to guarantee the proper functioning of an HVAC system. Our technicians have the skills and the expertise to inspect and provide services on all HVAC components and on all HVAC brands.


Air Conditioning Maintenance

Air conditioners have condensers, filters and evaporators that condition air appropriately. Scheduling spring and fall AC maintenance (tune-up) which can include an inspection, cleaning, lubrication of parts, thermostat and blowing air temperature check and more to ensure that your air conditioner is running smoothly and properly. Regular air conditioning maintenance can help your system run more efficiently, save energy and last much longer.


Heating System Maintenance

Heating systems use one form of fuel or another to generate the necessary heat. Schedule heating maintenance once to twice per year (preferably before it gets cold). Key aspects of heating system maintenance should include the cleaning of the blower assembly and inspection and adjustment of fuel-feeding components such as gas nozzles, electrical fuses/ sockets and gas outlets/ combustion points. Neglect of fuel sources cannot only reduce the effective functioning of a heating system, but can also be a health hazard as leaking gas can affect breathing, and faulty fuel sources can spark a fire.


Benefits Of A Well-Maintained HVAC System

HVAC systems should be properly inspected, cleaned, dusted and maintained to preserve efficient functionality and long life. Well-maintained heating and air conditioning systems will give you the peace of mind that you deserve.

We here at Bruce’s Air Conditioning and Heating are fully equipped and staffed to provide our Phoenix metro, commercial and residential clients with complete HVAC maintenance services as well estimation, installation, repairs and replacement of HVAC systems and components. Follow us for more great articles on heating and air conditioning and more.

Contact Us Now To Set Up An HVAC Maintenance Plan
To Preserve The Life Of Your Important System!