Heat pump for winter heating

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689
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us
I have been thinking about buying a portable AC/heat pump. I know they are limited to above freezing temperatures but the economy of operation attracts me. Right now I am in a place (OR) with electric heat, no gas or oil available. Home Depot has a unit on sale on their web site.
 

JHZR2

Staff member
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46,303
Location
New Jersey
Oregon? How many heating days and how cold at minimum? I think the better units can go down to pretty low temperatures (Ive never used it but IIRC the heat pump operation on my split system is -13F when it runs its internal heater, and 5F just running the cycle. I guess my issue is why would you do this? It makes zero sense to me. I bought a system with the capability, as it was the high SEER unit that was available (mini splits are much less lossy then central units and can go as high as 31 SEER). However, youre still running a thermodynamic cycle that is governed by mechanical and thermal exchanges at many sites. A resistive heater is 100% efficient, and so is likely the better bet than a more complex and convoluted approach.
 
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3,941
Location
Ohio
what are the details of your domicile? what are you intending to use the heat pump for? whole-house heating? zone heating? room heating?
 
Messages
9,801
Location
Ontario, Canada
Sounds interesting, I'd run the math of course and see what the payback period is. If its a only a couple of years I'd try it, if it takes any longer to pay off, then I wouldn't invest too much in case your situation changes.
 
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16,014
Location
NE,Ohio
I missed OR was oregon. I read it as or. I know my heat pump electric hot water tank is quite the energy saver.. but moving energy from air to water.. is probably easier than extracting heat out of cold air. at 600$? I would think the ROI would be quite a few years... But I dont have any numbers on your seasonal electic bill from heating..
 
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Messages
5,137
Location
Columbus,Nebraska
I opted out of the heat pump promotion by the local REA co-op fourteen years ago and went with electric heat. All the other seven houses on the block were built with heat pumps. Saw the local HVAC guy make many visits up and down the street to fix heat pump problems. Never had to have him look at my Rheem/Ruud electric furnace/ac. Did the same on the house we just completed but went with another brand.
 

datech

Thread starter
Messages
689
Location
us
Home Depot has this "Whyntner" (?) brand on sale for 411.99. It can also be used as an AC or dehumidfier. They are supposed to be more efficient than resistive heat, and cheaper to run. I have never heard of that brand.
 
Messages
2,547
Location
IL
Originally Posted By: HosteenJorje
I opted out of the heat pump promotion by the local REA co-op fourteen years ago and went with electric heat. All the other seven houses on the block were built with heat pumps. Saw the local HVAC guy make many visits up and down the street to fix heat pump problems. Never had to have him look at my Rheem/Ruud electric furnace/ac. Did the same on the house we just completed but went with another brand.
Are heat pumps that power hungry? IMO, electric heat is very expensive. The exception was last winter when propane was way more expensive. I would take propane any day over electric, it produces a warmer heat, and you can plumb in a propane kitchen stove, buy the right furnace and it will work with no electric power(like ice storms). I hate electric, just take one of your summer monthly bills, and quadruple it. That's what it's like heating with electric. ...then you loose power during ice storm, out comes the kerosene heaters/wood stove.
 
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Messages
322
Location
Virginia
I live in Virgina with a heat pump and when it gets below 35 degrees use the oil filled radiator heaters over the electric emergency heat source built in the heat pump system. This makes a real difference in my winter electric bills. *The defrost board can fail in a heat pump, then its on straight electric heat.
 
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9,783
Location
Saskatoon canada
Originally Posted By: Vern_in_IL
Originally Posted By: HosteenJorje
I opted out of the heat pump promotion by the local REA co-op fourteen years ago and went with electric heat. All the other seven houses on the block were built with heat pumps. Saw the local HVAC guy make many visits up and down the street to fix heat pump problems. Never had to have him look at my Rheem/Ruud electric furnace/ac. Did the same on the house we just completed but went with another brand.
Are heat pumps that power hungry? IMO, electric heat is very expensive. The exception was last winter when propane was way more expensive. I would take propane any day over electric, it produces a warmer heat, and you can plumb in a propane kitchen stove, buy the right furnace and it will work with no electric power(like ice storms). I hate electric, just take one of your summer monthly bills, and quadruple it. That's what it's like heating with electric. ...then you loose power during ice storm, out comes the kerosene heaters/wood stove.
Propane creates a "warmer heat "? That makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. As far as electric vs gas/propane what's more efficient is home specific. For example let's consider building a basement suite in an existing home. The cost of furnace moving,heat ducting and so on,without replacing the furnace itself starts at 10k. Now let's consider electric. I can put a radiant electric heater,with a room thermostat for under 200 a room. Now decide how warm you want each room. On new builds I try and sell radiant floor heat. By far my favorite type of heat and is very cost effective and efficient once all the equipment is bought. Glycol/wet type system with zone adjustment is fantastic. So one must consider an entire package and not just one aspect. So making blanket statements like yours shows you really aren't paying any attention and proves lack of considering any other application other than your own.
 
Messages
2,547
Location
IL
Originally Posted By: Clevy
Propane creates a "warmer heat "? That makes absolutely no sense whatsoever.
The heat generated by propane makes you feel good. A typical propane-powered heating system warms air to about 140 degrees. Compare this to a typical electric system, which only warms the air to 96-98 degrees, also propane vent less heaters will put moisture in the air, making it feel much nicer during the dry cold days of winter. BITOG is a place to learn, not criticize when you do not understand something.
 
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Messages
6,182
Location
Illinois
I have a vent less propane heater. Been two winters now. Best get a CO2 monitor and some sort of ventilation setup unless you have a very leaky house.
 
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