ShadowsDad
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Registration Date: 03-15-2020
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Heat pumps 3
Thread Subject Forum Name
Heat pumps The Front Porch
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OK, big reveal here... I'm not getting any younger! Yeah, I know what a surprise, right?

One of the things I did in the past was to install and remove window A/C units 2x a year. They don't get lighter as I age. Also on mornings where we need just a little heat I really dislike having to burn oil because the oil burner is like swatting a fly with a sledge hammer. So we made the decision to have heat pumps installed. Our home required 2 so we went with that suggestion. Too, when the gent came to look things over to give us the estimate he looked at the circuit breaker box and suggested we also get the old one changed out. I mentioned how difficult it was to find breakers to go in it and was told that the reason it was difficult was because they are no longer made. They had a tendency to start fires, but he'd use the existing box if we wanted him to. If made no sense to me to put in heat pumps and have our home burn down around them, so that box got changed too.

Before making the move I did ask around looking for heat pump horror stories and I couldn't find any.

So they've been installed for 5 days now and while I played (tested... note to self, it's called testing!) with all of the functions and they are quiet and appear to work fine, the heat mode is what I've used most often so far. This time of year it's not unusual to wake up to a cold home as our nighttime temp' can be quite cold. But the heat pump in the living area brings it up to a comfortable level quickly and silently. Unlike the oil burner it doesn't keep heating from the residual heat left in the burner that must be cooled off after the burner itself has shut off.

So far I'm liking them. We have a hot and humid spell coming at the end of the week and they'll get put to the A/C test then. We did use the "dry" function which no window mounted A/C unit has, and that might be enough for the coming hot spell. I'll pla... er, uh, <cough> test the units more at that time. With the "dry" function the indoor temp' can be set and the unit does cool, but that isn't the prime function. It cools just enough to remove water from the air. Unlike the window unit it was far more comfortable sleeping with the heat pump running set to dry.

We did discuss things with the office folks at the company we ordered from and one of the ladies heats her home with one here in Maine. Our winters get very cold. She told us that she has a full tank of oil and runs the burner once a year just to make sure it's working. She can't get rid of the oil in the tank. My plan was to use the heat pumps down to maybe 30°F and use the oil and then the wood stove for really cold temps. We'll see how that proves out. I might just use the heat pumps and the wood stove; we'll see. As I wrote, we haven't had them in very long. But so far I'm impressed. Unlike the oil burner there is no feeling of being cold until the burner turns on, then being too warm when it shuts down. The fan on the units ramps up and down as required to smooth out the high and low. That makes it very comfortable for waking hours and also for sleeping. I have never been comfortable with the oil burner due to the up and down temp' spikes.

To help with the move to the heat pumps our state has a rebate incentive. We'll get that $ back in no more than a few months. In the meantime I'm still learning about them as they get used.
FWIW, we got the Fujitsu brand and one is 14k A/C and 18k heating, the other is 9k/12k heating (? I think that's what it is). I think they can be what I consider to be surprisingly small in output because unlike an oil burner it's continuous and variable output. The Fujitsu will heat below -5°F but they begin to lose efficiency. The lady at the office and the owner who installed ours both heat all year long with theirs and our temps go down to -30°F. I don't plan on using ours at those temps though. I light the wood stove at about 20°F if it's going to stay there for awhile.

Maintenance? Clean the filters periodically. That's it.

Down south (USA) I think the use of these would be even more of a no-brainer. Heck, if they work in Maine...