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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    25

    Dual fuel or not to dual fuel

    Awesome site guys and gals its really made for an interesting and informative read for me. Im getting ready to get some quotes and Im very specific in what I want other then the dual fuel dilemma Im having. I live in Southern IL, have a late 80s newly remolded very well insulated and sealed home and have a 12 seer 3 ton Armstrong Im wanting to replace while I have the cash in hand. Im just needing some guidance in the dual fuel arena as to if its worth it in the region I live. The cash isnt a huge issue and I will be living here for atleast 20 years so I will have time to enjoy my unit whatever it is and just want to have the info to make an informed decision. I have a natural gas hookup within ten feet of the current electic strip air handler setup so thats not gonna be an issue but nothing else runs on gas in this home. Im going to be getting quotes for 18 seer 3 ton 95 or up heat pump with electric backup or a dual fuel heat pump of same specs. Im just wondering which way is going to be more cost efficient for my region of the country. Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    4,607
    with the current rate on natural gas unless you have very cheap electric i would get a 95% efficiency furnace and straight ac .im not aposed to duel fuel although many times it will not save any money also more parts to break. your salesman should be able to to show you the numbers using your gas and electric rates
    We really need change now

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    nebraska
    Posts
    1,629
    I'd suggest the duel fuel if your rates support it. Resistance heat costs a lot more to operate here than gas does.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    The South
    Posts
    2,138
    I would want to see your rates

    Electric cost/kWH all inclusive

    Nat Gas cost/therm all inclusive

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    NC Sandhills
    Posts
    391
    It all depends on gas vs electric rates and climate. For your area I think a Dual Fuel will be most effiecient/flexable option since you have natural gas. But if nothing else runs on gas then your electric rates may be low enough and your gas rates high enough to exclude dual fuel. Of course up front costs need to be factored in, but if you are in it for the long haul as you said its best to pay more up front for better equipment. You said your house has been remodeled and better insulated and sealed so most likely you will be better off with a smaller unit than original 3 Ton unless it didnt keep you comfortable, but a heat load calc needs to be done.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    North Dakota
    Posts
    518
    all things considered, hands down ele. resistance heat is most expensive look @ getting a gas 90+ furnace and a standard a/c 13+ seer.
    and as has been said over and over on this site have a manual J done and dont settle with out it !!!!!!! ask to see it !!!!alot of contractors are wanting to guess these days to save? time? its your money / comfort and happieness afterall is said and done

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    The South
    Posts
    2,138
    Fuel rates have to be examined closely to justify dual fuel systems.
    Not so long ago, there was real economic operating advantage of electric heat pump heating versus nat gas heating. This leverage has sharply narrowed. Mainly due to highly regulated electric rates that continue to advance upward and nat gas rates that have declined due to oversupply in the marketplace. It would be nice to have a crystal ball.

    IMO

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Emerald Coast
    Posts
    933
    Quote Originally Posted by 6speedb4c View Post
    ... want to have the info to make an informed decision. I have a natural gas hookup within ten feet of the current electic strip air handler setup so thats not gonna be an issue but nothing else runs on gas in this home. Im going to be getting quotes for 18 seer 3 ton 95 or up heat pump with electric backup or a dual fuel heat pump of same specs. Im just wondering which way is going to be more cost efficient for my region of the country. Thanks
    .

    Couple of questions: Is your current system total electric?
    The gas line you mention, is it now in use & / or has it just
    been stubbed out since house was built?
    ..
    Do not attempt vast projects with
    half vast experience and ideas.
    ...

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Missouri
    Posts
    3,422
    Super ask a real important question.....Are you now using this Nat. gas? From the sounds of it you are not. You've really got to figure the actual cost of using this Nat. gas including the cost each month for the minimums. I.E. if you have to pay $30 a month just to have it connected you've got to include this in your fuel costs!!! Sounds like now you're total electric with just one meter costs (well two if you buy water). Once you add the gas meter monthly costs, then this also must be paid each month even when you're not using gas. We've actually removed nat. gas furnaces over the years and had customers go with total electric simply because they got fed up with minimum cost for just the meter. My own house? I've got a gas water heater, and fire place so gas makes sense and the rate is very reasonable so I've got a dual fuel (95% with 14 SEER HP). I like the gas heat when it really gets cold, and the reasonable price of HP in mild weather. Our electric company discounts their rate if HP or totally electric.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    25
    Name:  SCAN0001.jpg
Views: 241
Size:  44.6 KB This is a large sampling of past billing. There is gas line ran in this house but it was converted to all electric about 10 or so years ago when remodeled for the all electric rate discount so I just need a meter if I go dual fuel. The minimum charge for gas was around 30.00 with taxes and then .64 a therm. So what do you pros think

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Booneville, Mississippi, United States
    Posts
    259
    Had a gas pack, swapped to a dual fuel and love it!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    25
    That far south and you still picked the gas over electric back up. Was your decision based primarily on comfort or cost. Im just looking for whatever is gonna give me the least expensive bill at the end of the month. Thanks for the views and replies, its most appreciated

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Booneville, Mississippi, United States
    Posts
    259
    Quote Originally Posted by 6speedb4c View Post
    That far south and you still picked the gas over electric back up. Was your decision based primarily on comfort or cost. Im just looking for whatever is gonna give me the least expensive bill at the end of the month. Thanks for the views and replies, its most appreciated
    It saved me a lot of money, best of both worlds and utilities went way down.

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