Living down south, I’m able to handle year round temperature with an electric heat pump. The single piece of equipment provides both heating and cooling capacity. In the summer, the heat pump functions almost exactly like a conventional air conditioner. It extracts heat from the home and through the use of refrigerant, transfers it outside. Because of variable-speed technology and longer run times at lower speeds, the heat pump is extremely effective at handling excess humidity. When the outside temperature drops, I simply switch the thermostat to heating mode and raise the setting. The heat pump reverses operation, finding ambient heat in outdoor air, compressing it to a higher temperature and bringing it indoors. This process is wonderfully energy efficient and won’t dry out the indoor air. The heat pump runs on electricity and relies on existing heat rather than burning fossil fuel to generate heat. With no combustion process, there is no byproducts such as carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide or formaldehyde. There’s no worry over fumes, hot surfaces, flames or greenhouse gas emissions. The system is quite environmentally friendly. There are very few moving parts to the heat pump, which minimizes maintenance requirements and the potential for a malfunction. During moderate weather, when I don’t need to heat or cool the house, I like to simply run the heat pump’s fan. The fan circulates the air in the house, keeping it feeling fresh. The fan is forceful enough that it creates quite a bit of pressure inside the home, and I need to make sure I open several windows. The open windows allow in fresh air, which enhances indoor air quality and comfort.