ICP products are ok.
Dual fuel can save 20% plus. It varies with what your utility rates are, and your climate area.
The discharge air temp will be lower with a heat pump.
One advantage of a dual fuel. Is that when the outdoor temps are low that the HP air temp would be low, the gas furnace takes over, and gives you the warmer discharge air temp.
Most of the time. When someone says you won't be comfortable with a heat pump. They are recalling the early days of heat pumps. When their performance was not very good.
ICP Products are...
Go with dual fuel, you will save money...
ICP has units up to 18 seer now...
i will be upgrading from a 13 seer to the 14 seer in the near future
unless icp comes out with a higher seer unit.
Does the 20% savings just apply to the heat aspect? What about ac? Our gas bill (which includes the upstairs furnace) is less than $100/month for the 5 months it was used in the fall/winter (for the last 2 years), so at 20% this would be a savings of about $80/yr, and cut that in half because the upstairs heat will still be an old furnace, so $40/yr. But our electrical bill for the hottest five months, on the other hand, is higher, paying on average $190/month. Based on utility bills when the ac isn't running at all, about $90 is for appliances/lights and then half of the rest is to run the upstairs ac. So the savings there would be $50/yr. So at less than $100 savings per year, it seems like it would take me 10 years to pay for the higher up front cost of a dual system. Am I missing something? Obviously this doesn't take into account changing utility costs.
No, you pretty much have it right.
If you include utility increases. It may still take 7 years.
In some areas, the rates are low enough, that pay back takes a long time.
So, should I not get dual fuel given my specifics?
Here is the deal, as I have gotten some quotes now from 3 contractors. I have another coming out this afternoon. Two contractors are in the same ballpark, but one I wasn't impressed with. The other contractor was significantly more expensive. The third contractor quoted me the Trane XL14c dual fuel for much lower (40% than the really expensive one. But the two cheaper contractors were withink 10% of each other with their Carrier quotes. So, either they both stink, or the expensive contractor is gauging me. I liked the expensive guy (I mentioned this below) and I flat out asked the cheap guy today (who quoted me on the dual fuel) about their prices and told him what the other contractor had said about quality of installation, etc. To that, he said a lot of people play games (give a high price and then will lower prices for you, etc, which was kind of done with the expensive contractor who offered a company rebate and also called his boss to give us more of a discount) and that his company just wanted to do a good job at a fair price. He also said that they may get more of a break on equipment because they do a lot of new construction work. All this being said, the cheap guy works for the company who has worked on our HVAC for the last 2 years (but they haven't done any significant work for us, just minor part replacement, maintenance) and the company has been around a long time. But the expensive guy is from a company that has been around a long time too.
So, any thoughts? I don't want to get a poor installation. But, with the prices quoted from the cheap guy I could afford the Trane extended labor warranty to cover myself if something isn't done right and still come out ahead. Maybe that isn't good thinking, I don't know.
Selecting a contractor is a very hard thing to do.
Because no matter what. You don't know how good they ae until after the install.
Yes, some contractors will start out at a higher price and then lower it, if you tell them you lie them, but company XYZ is only x amount for the same system.
Depends how busy they are, or are not.
Post your electric and gas rate, all taxes and delivery fee's included.
It sounds like you have a high electric rate. Or jus use a lot.
My HP with electric backup cost me $4.60 to heat the house in September, and I'm under $10 for October so far. 1100 square foot house, 70*.
Originally Posted by melbb
If you're climate is mild, like hours, electric back up heat might be better than dual fuel. With dual fuel, if the HP fails to keep up, it must be shut down to rum the gas back up. With electric, the HP keeps right on chugging, and the electric just takes up the slack.
electric rate is 0.114/kwh. Gas is $1.41/therm.
Contractor 4 just left and quoted me about the same as the other two cheaper contractors (a little more expensive) for the Trane XL14c gas/electric and the dual fuel. I was very comfortable with him and felt I could trust him.
beenthere, thank you for continuing to check in on this thread and helping me.
One other question, I have noticed some comments about tstats, specifically saying to get the HWIAQ with a Trane. What is the deal with this? What is wrong with the Trane tstat?
Oh, no, don't throw another variable into this!!
Originally Posted by gp_wa
Is your system new? If so, what did your utilities used to cost? I don't know much about your winters. 50 degree days and nights in the 30s are pretty typical here, with occassional 30 degree days/teen nights.
I changed my mind regarding your situation after seeing the average gas costs last winter. You may be better off going with straight ac/gas furnace. Do you know about the variable speed air handlers? There are alot of comfort features that have been added to the AC line in recent years. Before you commit I would explore the pros/cons of the upper level AC units to see if it may be something you would enjoy. I would also have your ductwork evaluated with a fine tooth comb to make sure it is both adequite for the airflow and sealed tight. There may not be problems with yours but if there are both the efficiency and the air quality may be improved.
Just a thought.
With your rates. And using the temps you posted.
Making a WAG, A duel fuel should save you better then 24%, providing your thermal balance point is 30°F.(Thats 24% for that system, not total of both systems).
Thermal balance point is the outdoor temp at which your heat pump can no longer heat the house by itself.
And with those cheap gas rates. If you use set back. It won't cost you an arm and a leg to use the gas heat to recover.
Oh noes, not more of those
Originally Posted by melbb
Brand new, fired it up in May. I don't know what it used to cost just to heat the house, but last winter we had a couple $200 months total electric bill. My last bill was about 65 a month (we're billed for 2 months). I have a meter on my heat/ac system now, so I can keep track of exactly what it costs. In fact, you have me wanting to call the power company and see what our usage average was last Sept. compared to this year...
Originally Posted by melbb
I think we're a little colder than you in the dead of winter, but reasonably mild. We'll usually have maybe five days that get below 20*. I expect my HP to keep up with demand at least to 25*, since its a tad over sized. We'll see.
Are we talking about packaged system here or split system? I think one thing I didn't make clear is that we have dual zones. The downstairs is controlled by the failing package unit, and the upstairs is split, controlled by a furnace/fan/coil in the attic connected to a remote compressor outside the house. As far as variable speed, I know about it with respect to the packaged Trane system I have been looking at. Is this the same thing? Our ductwork seems fine based on the people who have been out to look at it, although we might get some dampers installed as our family room (large room, faces west, cathedral ceiling and skylights) tends to be too warm or two cold compared to the rest of the downstairs and the air has a long way to travel to get there.
Originally Posted by Daltex