Decided after earlier thread on nat gas prices to go w/ heat pump replacement system but $$ tight of course. Stumbled across something James wrote in another forum back in Feb 2003:
"If they are using the RBHK17J11 Variable Speed (Rheem Airhandler Part Number) you will be getting about 13.5 SEER out of that system. In other words, if you use the 12 SEER outdoor(RPMC024) unit with the RBHK AHU, you get just as good as a SEER rating as buying the 13.5 seer system which is hundreds of dollars more. Now here is the kicker. Put a humidistat with the Rheem mercury bulb stat and you will really have a nice system. It will drop the humidity really low alowing a higher temp setting. This set up does not work so well from what I here with the digital stats."
Would others agree...does a 12 SEER + variable really jump up efficiency that much? If so, which Rheem or Ruud model numbers on the condenser and airhandler would be a good pairing currently? Can a non-Rheem/Ruud "humidistat" or whatsit be added...if so what company/product would work best? I have a great tech (A/S & Ruud guy)...will ask him too but wanted to know you guys's thoughts first. Baldloonie? Doc? others?