Hi, I live in the Williamsburg/tidewater area of Virginia. I have to
replace my furnace and AC system. Currently I have a gas furnace and an
old central air unit. Would I be better off with a heat pump with the
type of winters Virginia has? I am looking for low cost on maintenance
and high efficiency. Thanks for any advice.
In your area I would guess you would be slightly better off money wise
with the heat pump. However if you have never lived with as heat pump, be
aware that a lot of people who have had other systems and switch to it find
it less comfortable. The temperature of the air that is delivered is not
much more than the room temperature and with the air movement the wind chill
effect often makes it feel colder than the room temperature.
Have you experienced a house that uses a heat pump?
I live in Hampton Roads area of Virginia and would never consider
switching over to heat pump. My co-worker in Gloucester has heat pump
and regrets it.
I live in a new home in Howard Co, MD, as of may 2005. I have a 2 zone
system, heat pump in the attic for upstairs, and Heatpump with propane
'backup' in the basement for main floor.
I would not choose this option if I were to do it again. The just slightly
warmer than ambient temp air that comes into the master bath is pretty
uncomfortable when you are fresh out of the shower. My wife can't seem to
feel warm, even though both upstairs & downstairs thermostats are set on 74,
and seem to be maintaining that temp pretty well.
If the stat is maintaining the temp you set it at and you are still
cold this is usally caused by low humidity. The humidity for comfort
level should be around 46 to 56%. Yours is probably around 20% or so.
I'd like to add a humidifier to the system. I've received a bunch of
conflicting opinions on the subject. The HVAC guy who came to do a minor
fix when I first moved in was pushing to sell me a unit that mounts into
/onto the (plenum?). He noticed all the wood floors throughout the house &
told me I'd have major flooring shrinkage without a humidifier, and offered
to do a 'side job' installation. He works for a very large local HVAC
Another guy (plumber/hvac) who came to add on a filter to my well system
adviced against adding a humidifier to the air system, claimed it would
build up mineral, etc deposits because of the well water.
The builder agrees with the plumber/hvac guy.
I think I'd like to add a couple stand alone humidifier somewhere in the
house, but have not had the time to look into my options.
Any suggestions greatly welcomed.
So hvac/plumber guy comes and installs a filter for the well and then
tells you a humidifier will cause deposits etc because of the well
water? Do you not see what is wrong with this picture? Add the
humidifier, google is your friend. And stay away from "side job" guy.
Why? Because you will not get a valid warranty should anything go
wrong. Call a licensed hvac proffesional and they will be able to give
you some options, providing they are competent.
I live in Newport News. My house has a heat pump that is around 20 years
old. (not nearly as efficient as ones being made now) I have no complaints
whatsoever about it. Right now my thermostat is set on 68 and everyone in
the house (2 stories, 2000 sq.ft) is comfortable. My last house had a gas
furnace. While I will admit the air is a lot warmer coming out of the gas
furnace, I still love my heat pump and suspect that I will even more as gas
prices continue to climb.
A PROPERLY sized and installed heat pump in your area would be fine.
You will hear stories about how the air isnt hot enough, how it wont keep
the home warm...well, if they aint sized right, thats what you get.
A heat pumps temp output will indeed drop as the outer temps drop, but it
WILL maintain the homes temp, and since you are NOT wanting to live in 100F
temps Im sure it can, and will maintan 70-78F in the dead of winter with no
problems if its sized and installed right.
When we install them, we also ask the customer, do you want the "hot heat
pump option"...its nothing but a jumper on the board that will energize the
backup heat for about 45 seconds when the unit starts up. EVERY unit will
give an initial blast of cooler air out the ducts when the blower starts,
but this makes the unit resemble a gas unit on start.
Ad a humidifier and you are set.
We love our heat pump..Trane XL1200,with backup Trane 85% eff. oil burner.
40degrees and up Heat Pump, 40 Degrees and below oil burner. Iused 1200
gallons with my old oil burner, now with the heat pump, I use 360 gallons a
The system is 11 years old, and I live in Western Pa. It gets pretty damn
When the heat pump is on we leave the thermostat at 72 degrees, and NEVER
My wife likes the heat because it doesn't dry out her skin. If the temp.
and the oil burner, kicks in, we sweat, because the output is around 150
electric is never above 130.00 a month. In summer the XL1200 can freeze your
We have a all electric house with a 4 kw discount in the winter. Just my 2
I dont know about that..got several guys in here like myself that the heat
pump alone works fine, with no secondary heat.
That coil will start to ice up in the right humidty conditions, at temps as
high as 55F.
If you dont belive it, next time you have a cool early fall day when the
humidity is still up there, watch it when it goes into defrost mode...where
is all that water comin from?
This is Turtle.
I hope your meaning the secondary heat just not being used or having to
come in to keep the temp. right. Now a lot of Manufactor will tell you
to just turn the heat pump off at or below 10 degree F and turn on the
secondary heat at this point. Now at Zero degrees F and the job
requires 36K btu's to keep up and you have a 3 ton heat pump installed.
Do you think the home will be heated with the full 36K btu.s at zero
degrees outdoors and not need the back up heat. If you have the job
correctly set for BTU's needed you will need back up to make up for the
30% short fall on BTU's at zero degrees to heat the home. if it gets
zero degrees in your area , you better have back up and will need it to
Now if your thinking of not installing Back up heat in a home Read
Below. If you install back up heat in a home forget words below.
CB are you going to say this Stupidiest thing that i have ever heard of
in my life. You say you would install a heat pump and not have any back
up heat for the customer to have if the heast pump fails. I sure hope
this is not the case at all.
Without flaming you, without saying anything negative, I have secondary heat
Reading wasnt high on your list as a child was it?
No offense of course...its just that I dont think you fully understood what
we were talking about.
This is Turtle.
There was two answer for you and you could have chosen the one that
fits. I see by your disdisapprovial here it might have been that you
would install heat pumps without back up on the system. There is ahvac
contractor in this area that installs heat pump and does not put back
up heat on the system.
If you was truely a professional as you put on. you would not take
offence to what was said for there was two choices as to what the story
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