Many modern heating and cooling systems are total climate control systems. An air conditioner and a heat pump are two sides of the same coin; we are often referring to complimentary functions of the same mechanism. When it comes to wintertime, the function that matters is the heat pump, extracting heat from outside air and circulating it inside the house. There is no difference in the quality and quantity of cooling and heating from a heat pump and that from other cooling and heating systems. In fact, a heat pump can expend 30 to 60 percent less energy to supply the same heat as compared to an electric furnace with a resistance heating element.