If you found this article, chances are pretty good that someone has recommended, or just want to learn more about Hybrid HVAC Units for your home. With this post, I hope to try and help you understand a bit more about hybrid heating and cooling, so your decision will be easier.
In a nutshell, hybrid hvac systems allow you the ability to decide which form of heat you want during the colder months of the year. Hybrid system have no effect on your cooling costs. In many homes, you have a gas furnace inside with an air conditioner unit outside your home. A Hybrid HVAC System is very similar with the main difference being your outdoor condensing unit is a heat pump, versus a straight AC unit.
The choice on whether to get a Hybrid HVAC Unit or not, should be based on several factors, but the most significant, is the amount of HEAT your home uses. For instance, if you live in a place like Florida, where heat is rarely used, you will probably never get back the amount of money you spend to install a hybrid heating system, since you rarely use heat.
Here is the scenario…
You live in a town where the cost of electricity and natural gas are about the same right now, so you decide to stick with a gas furnace and AC unit outside your home. In November, the price of natural gas goes through the roof, and so does your heating bill over the winter months! Electricity however, remained at the lower cost…
If you had a hybrid system with an outdoor AC Heat Pump in your home, you would be able to tell your thermostat that when the outdoor temperature was above 35 degrees, instead of using the gas furnace to heat the home, use the heat pump! That means you would be using the lower cost of electricity to heat your home… When the temp goes below 35 degrees, most heat pumps are much less effective and your thermostat would automatically switch over to the gas furnace for heating purposes!
Cost of Hybrid Heating
In our area, North Carolina, you could generally expect to pay about 20-30% MORE for a hybrid system. This is based on two factors… 1: Heat Pump condensing units cost a bit more than straight AC, and 2: Contractors know that hybrid heating systems are a thing of the future and will just charge you more because they can!
If you have a perfectly fine gas furnace right now, you can easily switch the outdoor unit to a heat pump and you do not have to replace the entire system!