Due to the especially long and chilly winters in Orland Park, Illinois, a heating system is absolutely necessary.
We rely on the heater for about two-thirds of the year.
While centralized air conditioning isn’t vital, it’s certainly nice to have. I went quite a few years making do with window air conditioners and box fans. When the summer temperatures soared into the high eighties and the humidity became excessive, the house felt hot and sticky. It was difficult to sleep at night or be productive during the day. Not only were the portable cooling units not overly effective, they detracted from aesthetics. When I finally decided to make the upgrade into centralized cooling, I did some research into different makes and models of air conditioners. I wanted to enjoy maximum benefits from the investment. I came across electric heat pumps. Combining a heat pump with a gas furnace is called a dual fuel system. For local weather in Orland Park, this partnership of systems is extremely advantageous. While the investment into a heat pump was much larger than conventional air conditioning, the energy savings quickly recovered the extra cost. In the summer, the heat pump operates just like an air conditioner, providing a cooling effect by drawing heat out of the air and transferring it outside by way of refrigerant. The main benefit is that the heat pump can actually reverse the flow of refrigerant and supply heat. Even in chilly weather, there is ambient heat available in the outdoor air. The heat pump pulls the heat from the air and uses the process of compressing refrigerant from gas to liquid form to bring it to a higher temperature. Because the heat pump doesn’t burn fossil fuels to create heat, it is exceptionally safe, clean and environmentally friendly. It’s also far more energy efficient than the furnace. For the majority of the year, the heat pump handles our comfort needs. Only when the outdoor temperature drops below freezing does the furnace automatically take over.