I have a vacation home in the Western NC mountains. Someday it may become a full-time home. We're perched on top of a mountain at about 5,200 ft. We have no air conditioning in the house and other than about 5-7 days in August, don't need one. The temperature outside is seldom above 75 degrees. The winters, on the other hand, are fairly cold. Lots of days in the winter around or below freezing (although not Minnesota cold!)
We have installed a 10 year old Ruud Achiever Plus 120KBTU 94% LP fired furnace which is probably somewhat oversized but sure does heat up the house fast when we visit for a weekend. When we had the furnace installed we had a coil installed because as Floridians, we assumed all homes required air conditioning. (The first summer proved us wrong!)
Over the years the cost of LP has continued to rise, especially in the last several years. We are currently paying, including taxes and fees, $2.098 per gallon of LP. Electricity prices have been much more stable over the years. Right now we're paying a total cost of $0.194 per KWH.
So, after this long explanation, do you think it makes sense to purchase a HP, not so much for cooling, but for heating down to 30 plus degrees, then have the LP furnace kick in in a dual fuel setup?
If your answer is 'yes' would it be important to stick with a Ruud since that's what brand the furnace is? (The furnace is in good shape and I don't plan to replace it anytime soon even though I realize I won't be able to take advantage of a VS motor or some of the new features available in furnaces.)
Would the coil need to be replaced? It's never been used.
Thanks in advance for your thoughts.