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How Much Does it Cost to Install a Heat Pump in San Marcos?

September 20, 2018

heat pump vs conventional air conditioner in san marcos

The cost to install a heat pump in San Marcos ranges from $4,961 to $16,531, with the average cost being $9,440.

Wondering exactly what you’ll pay for a new heat pump?

Well, the only way to get a 100% accurate estimate is to have a heat pump professional give you a quote after visiting your home.

But, to give you at least a closer idea of what you could end up paying, we’ll share 4 big factors that determine price:

  1. The size of the heat pump
  2. The SEER and HSPF rating
  3. Warranty you choose
  4. The contractor you hire

Let’s go into each of these cost factors in more detail...

Want a professional estimate to install a new heat pump for your home?

Factor #1: The size of the heat pump

Here’s the gist: The bigger the heat pump, the more expensive it will be.

But bigger doesn’t always mean better when it comes to heat pump size.

You see, when it comes to size, you just need a heat pump that fits your home’s specifications. Just like when you shop for shoes, you don’t want a heat pump that’s too big or too small because…

  • An oversized heat pump can short cycle, meaning it cools/heats your home quickly then shuts off. This frequent “off and on” wears down the mechanical features in your heat pump and can lead to early breakdowns.
  • An undersized heat pump won’t be able to cool or heat your home efficiently, which will leave you uncomfortable and with higher energy bills (because the heat pump is constantly running).

How heat pump size is measured

Heat pump size is measured in “tonnage,” and most residential models range between 1 and 5 tons.

Tonnage refers to the amount of heat the heat pump can move out of/into (depending on the season) your home in an hour.

A heat pump professional will help you determine what size you need based on factors like…

  • The square footage of your home
  • How many people live there
  • The condition of your home’s insulation and ductwork
  • The # of windows, doors and rooms
  • Your home’s orientation and landscape (east vs. west facing, trees or lots of shading).
  • And much more

Calculating all of these factors is complex, so it’s necessary for a professional to handle it for you.

Factor #2: The SEER and HSPF rating

Heat pumps have 2 important efficiency ratings that affect price:

  1. SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating)
  2. HSPF (Heating Seasonal Performance Factor)

For both SEER and HSPF, the higher the rating, the more expensive the unit.

Let’s look at SEER and HSPF in a little more detail…

SEER

Basically, SEER tells you how energy-efficient the heat pump is at cooling. Most residential homes have SEER ratings from 14 to 24+.

The higher the SEER rating, the more energy-efficient and expensive the heat pump will be. But even though higher SEER units are more expensive upfront, they can save you money on energy bills in the long run.

Learn more about choosing a SEER rating by reading our article, "What SEER Rating Should I Buy for My San Marcos Home?"

HSPF

HSPF tells you how efficient your heat pump is at heating your home (remember: heat pumps both cool AND heat your home).

We recommend you go with the federal requirement minimum rating of 8.2 (HSPF ratings can range from 8–10). You probably don’t need to go higher than the minimum because San Marcos doesn’t require a lot of heating. But if you want to go with a higher HSPF rating than the federal minimum requirement, consult with a heat pump specialist to help you choose a rating that will best fit your heating needs and budget.

Factor #3: Warranty you choose

Warranties cover 2 different things:

  • Parts
  • Labor

Most heat pumps come with a limited parts warranty for 10 years, but usually you have the option to extend the warranty for an additional price. The longer the extended warranty and the more parts it covers, the more expensive it will be.

In terms of labor, most heat pump warranties cover the labor for the first 1–2 years of your heat pump’s life. That means that if something goes wrong with your heat pump, the warranty will usually cover the labor to repair it in the first couple of years after it’s installed. You can purchase an extended labor warranty (again, for an additional price) that will cover the labor costs for a certain amount of additional time beyond the first 1–2 years.

Factor #4: The contractor you hire

Some heat pump contractors are better than others which means when it comes to an installation, you get what you pay for.

Beware of contractors who offer a super low install price. They may bait you in with a low price but then do lesser quality work. A heat pump that’s installed incorrectly ends up costing you more down the road in repairs, so it’s better to have a quality contractor do it right the first time.

To find a quality contractor in San Marcos, look for these things:

  • Make sure they’re licensed and insured
  • Ask them for a scope of what the installation entails, to make sure they perform heat load calculations and inspect your home (vs determining your heat pump size over the phone)
  • Check their online reviews to see how satisfied customers are with their work

Want a FREE heat pump installation quote from a San Marcos pro?

We’ll send over one of our certified techs to give you a heat pump install estimate. In the meantime, visit our heat pump installation page to learn about what to expect when you hire us.

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