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Old 11-22-2010, 04:26 PM   #1
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Replacing 2 heat pump units - should I replace with 1?


I live in a 2100sqft masonry townhome in DC with 2 separate heat pump units with second stage heating (2 compressors on the roof, 2 airhandlers inside), one for the second floor and one for the first floor. I need to replace both.

I am definitely removing the first floor system, and putting the air handler in the basement and running a trunk line up from there. The decision I am trying to make is whether or not to just run the trunk line all the way up to the second floor and get a single larger unit to heat/cool both floors.

A) Is there any value to keeping the two-unit configuration in a 2100sqft (albeit poorly insulated) house?
B) Is a heat pump system with second stage heating sufficient in cold winters or am I throwing money away without having gas?
C) Does 10k to run a gas line to a house sound absurd? All of the abutting houses have gas going to them, the road is 11 feet away, I was surprised by the quote from Washington Gas.

I'm a complete HVAC idiot, so forgive me if I've botched the terminology. I'm getting quotes from Trane, Goodman and Carrier.

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Old 11-22-2010, 05:47 PM   #2
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Replacing 2 heat pump units - should I replace with 1?


Keep it as 2 heat pumps. Moving the one down to the basement for the first floor is a good idea.

You'll find that new heat pumps heat your house for a lot less then your old ones were.

And yes. 10 grand to run the gas line is absurd. Stay with the heat pumps. And use that 10 grand to seal your house, and add insulation. You'll get more return back from that, then switching to gas.

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Old 11-22-2010, 06:52 PM   #3
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Replacing 2 heat pump units - should I replace with 1?


If you were here the gas co. would run the supply line to your home FREE if you switched to 2 gas furnaces
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Old 11-22-2010, 09:43 PM   #4
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Replacing 2 heat pump units - should I replace with 1?


Quote:
Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
Keep it as 2 heat pumps. Moving the one down to the basement for the first floor is a good idea.

You'll find that new heat pumps heat your house for a lot less then your old ones were.
Thanks, is the main benefit of a unit for each floor the additional control over temperature?

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Originally Posted by kenmac View Post
If you were here the gas co. would run the supply line to your home FREE if you switched to 2 gas furnaces
Man that would be nice. As it was, Washington Gas took 6 weeks to get back to me on my new service request then told me 10k, and basically hung up.
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Old 11-22-2010, 11:13 PM   #5
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Replacing 2 heat pump units - should I replace with 1?


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Man that would be nice. As it was, Washington Gas took 6 weeks to get back to me on my new service request then told me 10k, and basically hung up.
Wow! That is either really bad PR and a ridiculously high price, or something has been left out your story. I work for a Canadian gas utility company and the actual cost to run a new service is roughly $1500, of which the customer only pays $75. If I were in your shoes, in the situation that you have presented I would get on their asses to establish a new service to your residence, especially considering that most gas utilities either don't charge, or just charge a nominal fee (we make our money on the meter rental, not construction or even the gas itself). Why is it that all your neighbors have gas, but you don't?
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Old 11-23-2010, 03:55 AM   #6
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Replacing 2 heat pump units - should I replace with 1?


Quote:
Thanks, is the main benefit of a unit for each floor the additional control over temperature?
Unless a single system is zoned. You don't the same temp on both floors. So you either end up making the first floor colder in the summer to get the second floor cool enough. Or making the second floor hotter, to get the first floor warm enough.

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