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Thread: Hybrid Oil

  1. #14
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    Yes, propane is refined from crude and therefore will track lock-step in price with your heating oil. You are also correct that BTU content of propane is lower than heating oil possibly erasing much of your savings. A quick Google to compare BTU content and comparing the efficiencies of your oil and propane furnaces can give you a ballpark on cost benefit.

    It sounds like you're on the right track running the numbers to find the lowest BTU cost.

    I would search the archives for discussions about crossover points, lockout, switchover, etc. That's an often discussed point.

  2. #15
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    If you get a zoned system, your balance point/change over temp can be set lower yet.
    You may want him to give you prices on 95% efficienct LP furnaces.
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  3. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by dac122 View Post
    Yes, propane is refined from crude and therefore will track lock-step in price with your heating oil. You are also correct that BTU content of propane is lower than heating oil possibly erasing much of your savings. A quick Google to compare BTU content and comparing the efficiencies of the your oil and propane furnaces can give you a ballpark on cost benefit.
    Yes, it is based on a couple of Google searches that I concluded that there's no apparent benefit to converting to propane. The savings -- if there are any at all -- would be marginal, yet the conversion cost is quite high (and that's without the cost of the tank, which is significant). If I assume that LP and home heating oil prices continue to track in lock-step, I'm not sure that I'd recoup the savings in this lifetime. So, unless I'm missing something (always possible), I think I'm back to hybrid-oil.

    Quote Originally Posted by dac122 View Post
    I would search the archives for discussions about crossover points, lockout, switchover, etc. That's an often discussed point.
    Thanks for the pointer; I'll go search the archives for that info.

    Quote Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
    If you get a zoned system, your balance point/change over temp can be set lower yet.
    Hmmm ... okay, I'll bite: Why would a zoned system allow me to set a lower change-over point? Won't the compressor go into defrost at (approximately) the same temp, regardless of the number of zones? Or am I missing something or oversimplifying the problem?

    Quote Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
    You may want him to give you prices on 95% efficienct LP furnaces.
    Yes, that was the quote I asked for. I figure if I'm going to put in a system, I might as well put in the most efficient system that is reasonable (something in which I have a recoup point in less than ten years).

    Thanks for the info!

    - V

  4. #17
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    A. Its a common misconception that you should switch to oil/gas heat before the temp gets cold enough to go into defrost.
    The HP is still more efficienct at 30*F then the oil/gas furnace.

    B. If you have it zoned in a manor that both zones don't call at the same time for most of the day, the HP can handle the load to a lower temp.
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  5. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
    A. Its a common misconception that you should switch to oil/gas heat before the temp gets cold enough to go into defrost.
    The HP is still more efficienct at 30*F then the oil/gas furnace.
    Yes, as I dig through the archives on "crossover" discussions, I'm starting to see that. (Holy camole, there are lots of knowledgeable people on this site. There's a LOT of information in them thar threads.)

    Quote Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
    B. If you have it zoned in a manor that both zones don't call at the same time for most of the day, the HP can handle the load to a lower temp.
    Yes, if the defrost issue is not as significant as I'd thought (i.e., it's not the driver that I thought it was), then I can see where the dual-zone configuration may allow the HP to keep up with the heat loss down to a lower temp.

    It looks as if I need to do some calculations to find the economic crossover point. The system I'm looking at is a Trane; I've looked around Trane's web site, but can't find any information on operating efficiency, COP plots (with temperature), etc. Heck, I can't even find power-consumption data. Is that sort of information considered proprietary, and thus not generally posted? Anyone know where I can find it?

    Thanks....

    - V

  6. #19
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    On Trane's commercial site (accessed from Trane.com), you can go to literature search, then type in the product you're looking at, i.e. TUD furnace, 4TWX5 heat pump, etc. The product data has good information, but it may not be everything you're looking for.

  7. #20
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    Did your research tell you if you have big enough ducting to add a heat pump?

  8. #21
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    Seems to me that diesel generator could be run from your fuel oil tank.

  9. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by big johnson View Post
    Did your research tell you if you have big enough ducting to add a heat pump?
    No, but the professional who looked at my system didn't seem to think it was a problem. There's limited headroom above the furnace (23 inches), but sufficient room to fit either a Trane 44kBTU or a Carrier 48kBTU coil.

    - V

  10. #23
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    I just checked 4-ton heat pump matchups with the XR13, XL14i and XL15i, and I did not see one matchup using the 4TXCC044 coil. Whatever system you get, make sure it is an ARI-rated matchup and get the ARI rating number.

  11. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Retired Guy View Post
    Seems to me that diesel generator could be run from your fuel oil tank.
    Could be done, although the tank is underground, so connecting a supply line -- which isn't entirely trivial even for above-ground tanks -- would be a significant effort. Also, the diesels are noisier (and dirtier) than the propanes, and require more maintenance. So although it would mean installing a propane tank and managing two different fuel sources/suppliers, propane is still the preferred option for backup power. Well, preferred to HHO/diesel. I still might go the deep-cycle-battery route, although that's not without its drawbacks, too.

    I suspect that this line of discussion is starting to drift afield of both this thread and the site's charter.... :-)

    - V

  12. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by vsabio View Post
    I suspect that this line of discussion is starting to drift afield of both this thread and the site's charter.... :-)

    - V
    Like thats never happened before.
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  13. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by RyanHughes View Post
    I just checked 4-ton heat pump matchups with the XR13, XL14i and XL15i, and I did not see one matchup using the 4TXCC044 coil.
    Nice job of translating from what I wrote (which, IIRC, was "4TXCW44xx," because that's what it looks like on the written estimate) to the correct identifier -- which, upon closer inspection, really does look like "4TXCC044."

    Quote Originally Posted by RyanHughes View Post
    Whatever system you get, make sure it is an ARI-rated matchup and get the ARI rating number.
    Whoa ... I Googled and found the AHRI site and their ARI match page ... but I'll be damned if I can figure it out from there. I'll ask the installer for this information. Thanks for the heads up. Never heard of an ARI match before.

    There's a lot more to this HVAC stuff than meets the eye. :-)

    - V

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