Some Information on Understanding Auxiliary Heat

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The more you understand your heating system the better prepared you are to determine whether there is a problem with your source of heat. HVAC units and heat pumps are frequently not understood by homeowners, which is why minor repairs turn into winter heat emergencies when the weather is unbearable. Understanding how your heat source works will also help you determine whether you need an emergency heating repair new orleans la. One of the main questions we get on a regular basis is ‘what is auxiliary heat?’ This question usually arises when customers look at their thermostat on a very cold day. They see the words ‘AUX’ or ‘Emergency H’. Both of these lights indicate that your system is running the auxiliary heat source, or back up heat source to warm your home. But what does this mean exactly? We will tell you. 

Defining Auxiliary Heat

Essentially, auxiliary heat is a secondary source of heat for your home. Sometimes this heat source is referred to as ’emergency heat’. Heat pumps loose efficiency and effectiveness as the outdoor temperature decreases. Once the outdoor temperature drops to a point where your heat pump can no longer combat the cold, your auxiliary heat is called upon to assist in maintaining a comfortable temperature in your home. 

Types of Auxiliary Heat

Standard heat pumps work well with electric heat strips as an auxiliary heat. Systems that qualify as duel-fuel typically use a secondary gas heat source. Typically, the auxiliary heat source is more expensive to run than the primary heat pump, so keeping auxiliary heat use to a minimum is desirable. 

How to Avoid Using Auxiliary Heat

If you don’t mind spending extra money on heating through the winter, it won’t hurt anything to allow your auxiliary heat run. However, if you are on a budget, limiting the use of your auxiliary heat will give you more power over your heating bill. To accomplish this, you can set your indoor thermostat to a lower temperature. With a heat pump, in an effort to save money, you cannot expect your indoor temperature to remain at 78⁰ if the outdoor temperature is 35⁰ outside. 

Other Ways to Reduce Heating Costs

Heat pumps are rarely budget friendly if you enjoy your home toasty warm all winter. A way to reduce your overall heating costs, if you have the option, is to install a gas furnace. Keep in mind, southern regions typically do not require a heat pump, but if you prefer higher temperatures, they are a great alternative. 

Duel-Fuel Heat Pumps

Heat pump systems known as duel-fuel systems. Typically, these heat pumps use a gas furnace as an auxiliary heat source. The gas furnace will take over when the heat pump, which is cheaper to run, is no longer able to maintain the temperature of your home efficiently. Auxiliary heat is an amazing way to ensure that your home stays warm and comfortable throughout the winter months, especially when winter storms hit because heat pumps are put under great strain during these tough winter times.

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