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Heat Pump Installation Near Me

Buying a Heat Pump: A Checklist

Thinking about buying a heat pump this winter but need help sorting through the information? Read our handy checklist for everything you need to know to make a smart choice in even the coldest climates.

February 7, 2024

What Is a Heat Pump?

While heat pumps are becoming more and more popular, don’t feel bad if you don’t know a lot about them. An electric air source heat pump is typically an outdoor unit that both heats and cools your home. They are alternatives to the standard central air conditioners and furnace systems.

How does a heat pump work? That’s another question we get a lot. Essentially, a heat pump uses heat energy and through heat exchange, transfers it to a cooler environment. 

This means the air source unit takes the heat in the outside air and transfers it into your home in the winter. It then reverses the process and transfers heat inside your home to the outside in the summer. 

For a more detailed explanation, read our blog on demystifying heat pumps.

Benefits of a Heat Pump System

  • They are highly efficient.
  • Heat pumps use electricity, meaning they don’t burn any fossil fuels, and therefore reduce your climate footprint.
  • A heat pump system can provide long-term cost savings on your energy bills.

How to Choose the Right Heat Pump

Choosing the right unit starts with asking some questions and finding the right answers. Some top heat pump considerations are size, energy efficiency, cost, and brand. Keep reading to learn more about each factor.

1. What size heat pump do I need?

Determining the correct sizing for your home involves either the Manual J load calculation or estimating based on the square footage of your home. 

Manual J Load Calculation

The Manual J load calculation is a series of calculations that HVAC contractors or technicians use to determine how much heating or cooling your home needs. It includes several factors, including:

  • The square footage of your home
  • Height of the ceilings
  • Your home’s insulation
  • Your climate and how many days you will need heating and cooling
  • How often you use the space (does anyone work from home?)
  • How many people use the space
  • Heat-producing appliances
  • Your preferred temperature
  • Number of exterior doors
  • Number of windows

The technician enters these numbers into a formula to determine the precise size of the unit you need. 

Square Footage Calculation

A calculation that is simpler but not as precise is calculating the size heat pump you need based on your home’s square footage. In general, Every 500 square feet needs a capacity of one ton for air conditioning. 

For example, a 1500-square-foot home would need a 3-ton unit, and a 2500-square-foot home would need a 5-ton unit. But you also need to understand what each ton means in British Thermal Units (BTUs). You might find the chart below helpful in sizing your heat pump. 

Home size (sq. ft.)
Heat Pump Size (tons)
Heat Pump Size (BTUs)
500 sq. ft.
1-ton heat pump
12,000 BTUs
1000 sq. ft.
2-ton heat pump
24,000 BTUs
1500 sq. ft.
3-ton heat pump
36,000 BTUs
2000 sq. ft.
4-ton heat pump
48,000 BTUs
2500 sq. ft.
5-ton heat pump
60,000 BTUs

2. What energy efficiency ratings should I look for?

In general, we would recommend opting for the most energy-efficient heat pump you can afford. Prices generally go up the larger the unit and the higher the energy efficiency. But remember that the more efficient a unit is, the more it can save you on heating and cooling costs in the future.


SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating, and SEER2 is the latest version that took effect in 2023. It measures the cooling efficiency of air conditioning units and heat pumps. The higher the SEER2 rating, the more efficient the unit is. 


HSPF2  stands for Heating Seasonal Performance Factor and HSPF2 is the latest standard that took effect in 2023. It’s a measurement of how effectively your heat pump can heat your home in the colder months. The higher the rating, the more efficient the unit is in heating mode.

3. What does a heat pump cost?

There is no simple answer to this question because we don’t know all the factors - the size of your home, the type of unit you need/want, and more. In general, the cost of getting a heat pump installed will be more than a standard system with an outdoor AC unit and an indoor furnace. For Trane products specifically, we provide a price range for some units in our pricing guide.

But because of the increased energy efficiency, you may see a near-immediate decrease in your heating and cooling bills, which will last for the life of your system. Add to that the availability of federal heat pump tax credits (up to $2,000) for Energy-Star-qualified units, and buying a heat pump can become a cost-effective home improvement.

You can also use the Energy Star Rebate Finder, which can help you find state and utility company rebates in your area.

4. What brand should I buy?

Research reputable brands in the heat pump industry. Check reviews from websites such as Consumer Reports and others. Look for brand reputation, reliability, and quality. Trane recently achieved the honor of being ranked as the Most Trusted® HVAC Brand for the 10th year in a row, and we are excited to share this news.

You can explore our heat pumps to see the features and efficiency ratings available.

Consider a Dual Fuel System

If you live in a colder climate such as Minnesota, you may be wondering if a heat pump vs furnace is right for your home. Heat pumps are very common in the southern states, but heat pumps in cold climates are a viable heating solution when you install a dual-fuel system

This is when you install a cold climate heat pump that can operate efficiently in colder temperatures, and connect it to a gas furnace which kicks in only in extreme temperatures that the heat pump can’t handle. 

You get the energy efficiency of the heat pump and you pay less for natural gas or propane. Plus, you get air conditioning during those summer heat waves that are growing more common in northern climes.

Consider a Mini-Split Heat Pump/Ductless Heat Pump

A mini-split heat pump, also known as a ductless heat pump is a heating and cooling system designed for rooms or spaces that don’t have ductwork. This could include a garage, an enclosed porch, an attic, or a lake cabin - you get the idea. 

Options include:

  • Mini-split single-zone heat pump for one space such as a garage or enclosed porch
  • Multi-split ductless systems where you can heat and cool up to five spaces without ductwork. This can be a great option for a remote cabin, an older building, or even a historic home where installing ductwork would be cost-prohibitive. 

An experienced HVAC contractor can help you determine the best solution for your home.

Find the Perfect Contractor for Heat Pump Installation

Finding the perfect HVAC contractor for your heat pump installation doesn’t have to be hard. But it will require some research. Here are some quick tips on steps to take to find the right company to do the job:

  • Ask friends and family for recommendations. NextDoor and Facebook community groups are also good places to ask for recommendations.
  • Google heat pump installation near me and check out the top 5 results, visiting their websites for valuable information.
  • Look for industry credentials and certifications, as well as licenses where applicable.
  • Read their reviews and customer testimonials, and look for how responsive they are to negative feedback, if any.
  • Confirm that they offer HVAC maintenance and repair services as well as installation.
  • Choose 2-3 HVAC contractors to visit your home and discuss the type of heat pump system they recommend for your needs, and the sizing that will offer the best comfort and efficiency.
  • Discuss the installation process and timeline with each contractor.
  • Discuss project cost and any financing options.
  • Choose the company you want to work with.

Be sure to keep your receipts for the work you have done and the certificates for the equipment you have installed so that you can claim your tax credits when you file your taxes. Enjoy the comfort of a new heat pump system and watch your utility bills go down.

Contact Your Local Trane Comfort Specialist

Are you ready to upgrade your heating and cooling system? From a standard heat pump system to a dual fuel system to a mini-split system, your local Trane Comfort Specialist can help you make the right choice for your home and your family. Reach out today to find the perfect heating and cooling solution for your home. 

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