COMMUNITY FORUM

bsilewis

07:00PM | 12/14/07
Member Since: 12/13/07
2 lifetime posts
Bvhvac
Hello I am looking to replace our existing gas furnace. I live in south central Kansas and I am curious to find out what would be the best system to replace it with? I am considering a heat pump or even an electric heater. From looking online I am not sure to heat pump is the best option, we have between 60 and 90 days where the temperature is less than 35 degrees. The reason I was considering electric is because the furnace is the only appliance running on gas and I hate those summer months where I have to pay the gas company $20 dollars for basically keeping my account open since the only gas being used is the pilot light.

Billhart

04:46AM | 12/15/07
Member Since: 04/25/05
1918 lifetime posts
In general, in the central plains states the electric rates are reasonable.

But there are often special heating rates of some type or antoher. You need to check with your POCO. The might not have rates that show on your bill.

Some utilites have a separate meter.

I am in the KC area and we have demand based winter rate.

Summer and winter the first 600 kWh are charged the same rates. Then for the 4 summer months the next increment is charged at a higher rate.

In the other 8 months the there are two stepdowns in rates to about 5%. And if you registered as having all electric heat then you can about 10% more off the highest usage rate.

About 4 years ago resistive heat (plain electric) was slightly cheaper than gas.

Since then the gas rates have moderated and the electric has gone up a little.

But as a heat pump you will save fair amount based on those rates.

And I doubt that you 60 to 90 days when the tempature is below 35. Probably more like 90 days where PART of the day is below 35, but there will still be a number of days where a fair part of the day is above 35.

With an heat pump with resistive aux heat the the heat pump still puts off heat as it gets colder, but not enought to keep it warm so resistive heat is used for part of the heat.

But be aware that you will need several large cables run for the aux heat and you might need to upgrade your electrical supply.

Call the POCO and ask for the marketing deparment. They should give you the rates. Also they might have rebates free interest loans for converting and/or going to a high eff AC unit.

Likewise ask the gas company.

Some states have rebate programs, but I don't think that KS does, but ask.

bsilewis

06:41AM | 12/15/07
Member Since: 12/13/07
2 lifetime posts
Thanks for the information and not calling me a blonde!! I wasn't sure if a heat pump was a good option for our climate. I'll look into getting the rate info and make my decision from there. An all electric house is attractive to me because gas prices are going to keep going up but as producing electricity becomes more efficent the price will go down. Plus you don't have the possibility of CO poisoning or explosions (which I know rarely happens)!

Billhart

10:36AM | 12/15/07
Member Since: 04/25/05
1918 lifetime posts
"which is why electricity cost more than the fuels it is made from. "

That maybe, but while at one time common it is no longer practical to burn coal in the home.

And in the central state most electrical comes from coal fired plants with a some hyrdo and nuclear.

No oil. And some gas, but mainly used for peaking units.
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