Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 13 of 16
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    15
    I probably need "HVAC for Dummies", but here is my question...how does one make the final decision about whether to go with a heat pump when replacing a gas furnace and air conditioner? I live in Cincinnati, this is my first year in this home so don't know what to expect. I have pretty much decided on a Bryant Plus 90t.

    The house is 1300 square ft, cape cod built in 1928, upstairs bedroom only used for guest room. Original wood double hung windows with aluminum storms. Attic insulation approx 10" but no wall insulation. Aluminum siding over old cedar (?) shingles. Regardless of which Bryant or Armstrong I go with, it's approximately $770 to go with heat pump. I will probably live here 5-10 years.

    My main concerns are that heat pumps don't last as long as a/c (altho I don't use my a/c unless it's extremely hot and humid), I know the air blows "cooler" ...and wondering what will happen with local electric rates here. Right now they are cheaper than gas, but contractor told me they have rumors that after Jan 1 they will increase 40%. I am trying to make an intelligent decision based on what I know, but I don't own a crystal ball. I don't want to be kicking myself in the butt in a few years for not being more forward thinking....any help would be appreciated!

    By the way, I can take the extra cost, just want to know if it's worth it. Also, is it worth an extra $800 to jump up to variable speed? I don't usually leave my fan on all the time.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    2,927
    Originally posted by treewoman

    My main concerns are that heat pumps don't last as long as a/c
    that shouldnt be an issue.it should last until it falls apert from rust, or hit by an asteroid.

    I also sell asteroid insurance,but I am not allowed to mention the price...site rules.

  3. #3
    heat pumps dont last because most residential techs really do not understand the system. how to charge, wire up heat strips, or troubleshoot them real well. but if you could find the right contractor it would be a good investment.
    bryant is a far better system than armstrong. the bryant reliant series is as good as they come. i would go for 13 seer or better with a variable speed air handler. if going with a bryant get the thermidistat thermostat and you could enjoy the superdehumidification system. you can do a lot of things with this system that other manufactures dont use. carrier invented it and it is outstanding.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    SW FL
    Posts
    5,998
    Originally posted by jacob perkins
    Originally posted by treewoman
    My main concerns are that heat pumps don't last as long as a/c
    I also sell asteroid insurance,but I am not allowed to mention the price...site rules.
    Jacob,

    I was not aware of your employment with Lyolds of London.
    I am SurE they can give me a Quote!

    Designer Dan
    It's Not Rocket Science, But It is SCIENCE with "Some Art". ___ ___ K EEP I T S IMPLE & S INCERE

    Define the Building Envelope and Perform a Detailed Load Calc: It's ALL About Windows and Make-up Air Requirements. Know Your Equipment Capabilities

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    SW FL
    Posts
    5,998
    Originally posted by treewoman

    1300 Square Ft
    Cape Cod built in 1928
    Upstairs bedroom only used for guest room
    Original wood double hung windows with aluminum storms Attic insulation approx 10" but no wall insulation Aluminum siding over old cedar (?) shingles

    Regardless of which Bryant or Armstrong I go with, it's approximately $xxx to go with heat pump.
    I will probably live here 5-10 years.

    ... Right now they are cheaper than gas, but contractor told me they have rumors that after Jan 1 they will increase 40%.

    Also, is it worth an extra $xxx to jump up to variable speed?
    Electric Rate $0.___ / kW ?
    Gas Rate_____ $_.___ / MCF

    2.5 or 3-ton 2-stage Heat Pump might be a fit.

    Estimated pay-back = ~9 years
    Designer Dan
    It's Not Rocket Science, But It is SCIENCE with "Some Art". ___ ___ K EEP I T S IMPLE & S INCERE

    Define the Building Envelope and Perform a Detailed Load Calc: It's ALL About Windows and Make-up Air Requirements. Know Your Equipment Capabilities

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    15
    Originally posted by dan sw fl
    Originally posted by treewoman

    1300 Square Ft
    Cape Cod built in 1928
    Upstairs bedroom only used for guest room
    Original wood double hung windows with aluminum storms Attic insulation approx 10" but no wall insulation Aluminum siding over old cedar (?) shingles

    Regardless of which Bryant or Armstrong I go with, it's approximately $xxx to go with heat pump.
    I will probably live here 5-10 years.

    ... Right now they are cheaper than gas, but contractor told me they have rumors that after Jan 1 they will increase 40%.

    Also, is it worth an extra $xxx to jump up to variable speed?
    Electric Rate $0.___ / kW ?
    Gas Rate_____ $_.___ / MCF

    2.5 or 3-ton 2-stage Heat Pump might be a fit.

    Estimated pay-back = ~9 years
    That's the problem, I don't know what the electric rate will be in January, 2006! If I assume that gas and electric rates were to be comparable, which way would I save more money, going with standard a/c or going with heat pump?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Shreveport, Louisiana
    Posts
    2,324
    Have you checked yor weather statistics for the area and see what you fall and winter temps are. Is it worth it to have a unit thet will only heat downwards of 40 degrees F and then require secondary heat below that. I am in Shreveport, Louisiana and gas is predicted to rise 40% and electricity 17% this winter.

    I would not use variable speed for your installation. Old house..


    [Edited by berg2666 on 11-10-2005 at 09:19 PM]

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    15
    Originally posted by berg2666
    Have you checked yor weather statistics for the area and see what you fall and winter temps are. Is it worth it to have a unit thet will only heat downwards of 40 degrees F and then require secondary heat below that. I am in Shreveport, Louisiana and gas is predicted to rise 40% and electricity 17% this winter.

    Temps here seem to be fairly moderate, altho there are extremes. I just moved here from Michigan, so it's hard for me to judge. Average winters temps here are more moderate than Michigan, where heat pumps weren't really used much. My Dad installed a heat pump back in the mid 1970's here in Cincinnati and was very happy with it, but he didnt' have the option of gas....had an electric furnace backup. This is driving me nuts! Should I just flip a coin? By the way, my house was purchased for $104,000 in a working class neighborhood, it's not like someone who might buy this house would expect the most up to date technology, but I do like to try to conserve whenever possible!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    15
    Originally posted by jacob perkins
    Originally posted by treewoman

    My main concerns are that heat pumps don't last as long as a/c
    that shouldnt be an issue.it should last until it falls apert from rust, or hit by an asteroid.

    I also sell asteroid insurance,but I am not allowed to mention the price...site rules.
    I am not planning on asteroids.....but are you serious about the life of these things? The guy who gave me my last quote says his lasted 17 years, but then he was bound and determined to make it last. I am thinking that because I don't blast my a/c for six months out of the year (like most folks do around here) I might get longer life out of it. I am more concerned about saving on heating costs vs. cooling.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    28
    Natural Gas or Propane? If its propane, get rid of it. Heat Pumps have come a long way. Make sure to go Variable Speed on the indoor for Heat Pump. Makes a big difference. Have you considered DUAL FUEL? Heat pump outdoor with coil indoor and gas furnace. Best of both worlds...can be expensive though.

    The arguement on to heat pump or not to heat pump often depends on utilities. Some utilities offer cheaper electric rates if your house is heated by electricity. This can make or break the decision. Check with your local utility. If you go heat pump, think about R-410A and look heavily at HSPF ratings (like SEER is for cooling...but for heating of heat pumps) A little bit of HSPF efficiency goes a long way for a heat pump. Especially in Concinatti.

    If you're planning on selling in 5 years, consider that houses with heat pumps probably dont sell as well as houses with gas furnaces. Hence, another argument for Dual Fuel.

    As far as brand...Im a big American Standard/Trane fan, especially when it comes to heat pumps. Worth looking at.

    Good luck!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    15
    Originally posted by americanair7
    Natural Gas or Propane? If its propane, get rid of it. Heat Pumps have come a long way. Make sure to go Variable Speed on the indoor for Heat Pump. Makes a big difference. Have you considered DUAL FUEL? Heat pump outdoor with coil indoor and gas furnace. Best of both worlds...can be expensive though.

    The arguement on to heat pump or not to heat pump often depends on utilities. Some utilities offer cheaper electric rates if your house is heated by electricity. This can make or break the decision. Check with your local utility. If you go heat pump, think about R-410A and look heavily at HSPF ratings (like SEER is for cooling...but for heating of heat pumps) A little bit of HSPF efficiency goes a long way for a heat pump. Especially in Concinatti.

    If you're planning on selling in 5 years, consider that houses with heat pumps probably dont sell as well as houses with gas furnaces. Hence, another argument for Dual Fuel.

    As far as brand...Im a big American Standard/Trane fan, especially when it comes to heat pumps. Worth looking at.

    Good luck!
    Yes, this would be dual fuel- natural gas with heat pump. Maybe I should have clarified that in the beginning. My utility company does not offer any special rates at this time (altho six miles from me, in INdiana, they do!) Go figure! Like I said, the cost is not a huge different to go strictly gas furnace (93%) with a/c, vs same furnace with heat pump. I just can't decide because of the electric rates being in question. Anyone out there have a crystal ball? I think my local electric is coal fired, which may be a plus right now. I don't think gas is going to get cheaper, but I could be wrong. Thanks for your input everyone!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    2,927
    Originally posted by treewoman
    [.but are you serious about the life of these things? concerned about saving on heating costs vs. cooling.
    It is my opinion that heatpump yearly cost to operate will be less.

    Since there are more components in a heatpump,then there is greater likelihood of something needing repair.However,that has not been my experience.

    Find a good company to size,install and service,and you should be happy with your comfort and energy costs.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    15
    Thanks to you all for your expertise! Since I like to try to be on the cutting edge, I am tending to lean toward the heat pump/ gas furnace dual fuel. Of course if this doesn't work out, I'll come back and *****!!! Ha ha. Seriously, I do appreciate all the input!

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Comfortech Show Promo Image

Related Forums

Plumbing Talks | Contractor Magazine
Forums | Electrical Construction & Maintenance (EC&M) Magazine
Comfortech365 Virtual Event