Question about Ruud UBHC Air Conditioner

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I have a 23 year old Goodman 4 ton HVAC system that has done well but is needing more repairs more frequently. I am looking to replace the unit but anything I install will be placed on credit which is not ideal as we recently dumped a lot on our credit to adopt a child. We live in mid/north Georgia in a 2 story with basement that we partially finished. The second floor is hotter than the main floor but is mostly offset by leaving the fan ON instead of AUTO. Anyway, our serviceman recommended a Ruud 18 seer with 80 furnace to take advantage of the tax rebates and offers from Ruud. He also suggested an alternate would be a 13 seer with 80 furnace but obviously not as efficient and not eligible for the tax rebate or Ruud rebate - but less expensive to install. Before talking with my serviceman I was considering a dual fuel system but was told the gas company charges an additional fee if this is done. Our power company also provides a credit for converting to electric - the more we convert the higher the credit. (ie heat pump, dual fuel, water heater...) Unfortuately I have heard that heat strips do not provide comfortable heating for a few weeks out of the year in this area. Ultimately I am looking for a system that will be as efficient as possible but will reduce our power and gas bills enough to pay for the additional installation cost over no more than 3 to 5 years. Does anyone have any recomendations, suggestions, or questions I should be asking?

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A 23 year old unit will be a major energy hog.You will see a massive improvement even with a less efficient unit,but go with the energy efficiency.The price of fuel is going to keep going up,and you will be using the furnace for many years.I'm in Ohio,and we get by just fine on electric for the very rare occasion the temperature drops below the level where the heat pump cant keep up.If this really worries you,you can put a couple space heaters back for emergency.Of course your talking about a gas unit,or a dual fuel unit.The dual fuel would be your best bet of course for ultimate fuel efficiency,but they can be pricey for the ones with all the bells,and whistles.Some will even use the fuel that is less expensive at any given time throughout the day.For example in some circumstances electricity is more expensive during the day then at night.Ultimately you have to figure out how much energy you use on average to heat your house.If you know the efficiency of the unit you have now you can estimate the actual output energy that is actually needed to heat/cool your house.Which would be the effective output of the old unit.Figure out how much less energy input you will need with a more efficient unit to get the same average output as the old unit.Subtract the energy usage for the new unit from the average energy use from the last winter.This will be your approximate energy savings.This should give you some Idea of the energy savings.

Posted on Jun 24, 2009

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