How Much Does a Heat Pump Cost?

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Terri Rorex

Subject: Heat pump cost

We are building a 1137 sq ft lake house in AR. We experience all four distinctive seasons. Frigid weather in winter to scorching hot summers and everywhere in between. We use our current lake trailer year round as a weekend getaway however since we are slowing down with our jobs and with a new build there I believe we will utilize the new house a lot more.
I was already planning on looking into a heat pump. Our builder suggested a ground system heat pump with a gas heat back up. Ian trying to get an estimate outside of him or anyone around my area to see if it's close to the estimate we will soon be receiving from him and his crew .... I just want a "neutral" ball park figure. I realize this might be difficult not knowing all the details. I do know the builder said he would have to have his guy dig about 6 little wells at the front of the lot to run back to the 1137 1 level sq ft house. ( the house will take up the back portion of our acre lot ) . Please advise soon because we are getting our estimates this month to become prepared for some decisions on things thank you very much. ( we already have propane gas tank hookups and electric hookups on the lot that service our old lake trailer that we are currently still using and is still located there ).

David Godsey

Subject: Calculating fuel costs for heating

A handy starting point table for homeowners can be found by doing a Google search on "DoE heatcalc.xls".
It is a Department of Energy spreadsheet which downloads to your computer. You can plug local utility and fuel costs into it and it will recalculate options, based on type of heating device, for comparison purposes. You still need to do an energy audit to ensure insulation, air leakage, etc is up to snuff prior to making an investment.

Joel Reese, ACEM

Subject: How Much Does a Heat Pump Cost?

Your author did not discuss three of the many important aspects of selecting a new heating and cooling system. 1) You must check your local utility rates - electric; natural gas; propane; oil - and use those rates to determine what your energy costs might be for each fuel. You cannot make a blanket statement that a heat pump will provide lower costs than a natural gas furnace without knowing the local energy rates! That could mean 100's of dollars in additional energy expenses every year for 20 years. 2 ) It is not very wise to install a heat pump in a home that has not been built or upgraded to a high level of efficiency. The owners could end up using so much strip heat in order to achieve a proper comfort level that their energy costs might skyrocket. Ask any HVAC Contractor about this one! 3) If the homeowner is either cold natured or is already used to gas heating, then installing a heat pump in their home without significant upgrades to the duct system and thermal envelope will likely generate some comfort complaints. Purchasing a new heating and cooling system is a major investment for most people. Relying on general information like what is contained in this article to make this decision can be costly to your pocketbook and leave you feeling "out in the cold".

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what should you pay.  You pay what you can afford.  1100sqft unit requires a min. of a two ton unit.  prices range from 2100-2900 depending upon the seers of the system.  13 seer is the min. the law requires  and for your situation with 1100 sqft.  do not worry about the seers as long as it is to code.  the bigger the house the more seers for economy.  1100 sqft is at the border line for a two ton system.  It is more important to have your new system balance, there is where you get the economy on your electric bill and gas.  Bryant, lenox, ruud and carrier are the brands you should stay with.All have the same basic factory warrantee and will last you longer than you expect as long as you maintain it with regular check ups twice a year once in the spring and then in the fall.

raymond gonzalez
koolray heating and air
 clarksville,tn
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APRStore.com offers a nice sizing chart for HVAC capacitors and furnace capacitors. Most of the capacitors I've looked at are $5 to $15 dollars, so a little less than Home Depot and Lowes.

 

Replacement is really easy, but be sure to watch a youtube video on how to replace it like this one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_IpydZIsOJg

 

Stay safe and hire a professional if you feel unsure about doing it yourself!

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The only thing of importance, is the hvac professional you choose to use. Alot of manufacturer's pieces are built relatively the same, and will last about the same amount of time. The thing that matters most is what you can not compare between companies, and that is the installation. Purchasing a system is not like purchasing a car, where no matter where you buy it, they are all the same. Each installation is different, and usually what you are paying for is the level of expertise, and quality of the installation, the company who will actual give you the warranty, and the comfort that you will receive. Manufacturers warranties disappear every day. They always have a loophole where they can get out of paying, but your local dealer wants to keep you happy for future work, and to protect his reputation in the communiy. Look up 4 year old Nordyne and Goodman warranty problems. Choose the HVAC professional first. It will cost you the least in the long run. I have had to totally redo plenty of installations that were just performed because of an uncomfortable customer, and a system that keeps breaking down. The equipment is only as good as it's installation, and over 70% are not installed correctly.
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I think maybe you are confusing SEER, which is an efficiency-related rating (higher SEER means more effective use of the electric power used to compress the gas), and TONS rating, which is a measure of the total cooling power of the system. (Tons used to mean how many tons per hour of ice was used in evaporative cooling building systems - a Refrigeration or Cooling Ton equals 12,000 Btu/Hour of energy exchange. A BTU, which is another antique measure but still used, is the energy needed to change the temperature of a pound of water one degree fahrenheit. Unfortunately, because of varying humidity and evaporation, this is not readily related to house air heating or cooling without a lot of assumptions and some computations. Relating this to today's world - the Manuals BayAreaAc referred to account for all these energy conversions and determine an estimated cooling (or heating) requirement for your specific house. The type of construction, solar exposure, general climatic conditions such as average temperatures, humidity, and hottest and coldest normal ambient temperatures and desired inside temperture are all taken into account in the more sophisticated versions of the analysis, so there is no "standard", though a rough old rule of thumb was about 1 ton of cooling per 500SF of house. Obviously, this was a WAG only because it did not account for insulation, type of roofing, whether you live in Alaska or Miami, etc. The ACCA manuals do a very simplified form of evaluation to arrive at a "design", which generally will be adequate. OF course, highly precise calculations are not really needed because A/C units generally come in even ton ratings - so if you are at say 2.6 ton requirement you will be getting a 3-ton unit anyway. SEER ratings are not a direct measure of efficiency, but the relative difference between ratings gives you good idea of the unit's relative efficency in using electricity - so a 16 SEER should be about 19% more efficient (so roughly comparable lower electricity bill) than a comparably sized 13 SEER unit. 13 SEER is the lowest efficiency currently allowed to be built for general use, 19 SEER is about the highest efficiency made by pretty much all manufacturers, and about 25 SEER is the highest rated though very pricey shelf-item units, though special construction custom units can reach about 30 SEER. Note however, like any government sponsored rating, much of it is hooey when you get down to it - for instance, SEER ratings are figured based on 80 degree inside air temp and 82 degrees outside, when that is far from the normal case of mid to low seventies inside and high eighties or above outdoors. This makes the absolute SEER rating meaningless, but relative numbers still have meaning in comparing units. Note these efficiency ratings are for conventional air conditoners and heat pumps working in ambient air conditions. Ground sourced Geothermal or lake/river exchange cooling units, though initially more expensive in most cases, can greatly exceed the air-exchange unit efficiencies because they are exchanging heat with cold natural water rather than with a high-temperature outside air, and instead of continually compressing a gas are just circulating cold water. I worked on one geothermal cooling project which had almost infinite efficiency, which of course makes no sense - but the only power was for sensors and a control valve as the water flow was single-pass under gravity flow, so no power was used to circulate the water.