It seems it’s always a conflict between keeping your home comfortable and keeping energy costs within reason. There’s now a way to have your cake and eat it too – stay comfortable and still keep your heating bills under control. The efficiency of a dual fuel system will do it for you.
Winter comfort without waste
Here in the Metro-East area, an air source heat pump is not practical for year-round comfort. If winter temperatures get seriously cold, a heat pump will struggle to provide comfortable heating. At this point, most air source heat pumps will switch over to “emergency” heating, an electric heating element that’s very expensive to operate. With a dual fuel system, the heat pump instead will switch to a gas- or oil-fueled furnace, which will continue to provide comfortable and relatively inexpensive heating for your home.
In any 24-hour period, an average winter day in our area can have a temperature range between 25 to 45 degrees. Combining a furnace and heat pump in a dual fuel system gets you through that average day with efficiency and comfort. A heat pump is very efficient down to about 32 degrees, then, as stated, starts losing efficiency. A furnace set to begin working below 32 degrees – or at whatever temperature your technician sets as the balance point – will use gas or oil more efficiently. With a dual fuel system, you’ll likely also have the ability to manually switch the fuel source. These days, with natural gas prices relatively low, some homeowners are switching from the heat pump to gas heating even when outside temperatures are above freezing. In those cases, the energy efficiency of the heat pump is outweighed by the lower cost of gas heating.
In the summer months, the heat pump provides all the cooling you need with unmatched comfort and low electrical costs.
At installation, the technician will set your system to change from one form of heat to the other at a set temperature, the balance point. All you do is sit back and enjoy the comfort and the energy savings.
Get the full information about marrying your existing furnace with an air source heat pump. Contact us at Ernst Heating & Cooling to find out how much your fuel cost savings can be. We’re always happy to help with any of your home comfort questions.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Hamel, Illinois and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about dual fuel and other HVAC topics, visit our blog.
Image courtesy of Shutterstock