Heat Pump or Gas Furnace

3 Replies

We are remodeling our house in Portland Oregon and are at a point where we need to choose between a heat pump or gas furnace. 
During winters we have noticed we are always comfortable at 72degrees and I’m wondering if someone has a heat pump with weather similar to Oregon’s and can have a warm cozy house :)

Gas all day long, and maybe with an AC unit that can double as a heat pump if needed/wanted. Gas heat is a lot more comfortable, easier for renters to understand (we are constantly explaining the way heat pumps work to renters, who think you can jack the temperature down to 60 when they are at work then up to 73 when they get home and not get a huge electric bill), and (at least right now) cheaper than electric because of the price of gas. Your outdoor unit will also last longer because you're only using it half the time. Gas furnaces - especially if you don't leap for some ultra-high efficiency unit - have hardly any moving parts. My last gas furnace in my house lasted almost 29 years. 

We've been buying heat pumps for our rentals for years. They work fine in your climate (our rentals are three hours north of you) and many of our properties don't even have access to gas.

It's very likely that the actual heating load is smaller than what most furnaces can provide. It's not uncommon for gas furnaces to be 3x larger than they need to be. Heat pumps are usually sized better.

Do you currently have ducts in the home?  Currently a gas furnace in place?  That is probably the easiest to replace with gas.  If you want to consider the long term energy efficiency and/or if you don't currently have ducts, then I would favor ductless heat pump system.  These have the lowest operating costs of any system, and can be zoned where you need them. The provide both heating and cooling.  In really cold temperatures they are not particularly efficient, but 40 degree and above very much so.