Depends on the cost of utilities. If a large enough lot, there is always Geo-Thermal. Otherwise, Heat pump is the best route to go with, especially with the huge rebates you can get through your utility & on your Tax Return.
I would recommend gas everytime, if you are on natural gas, propane is a big cost variable, typically NG is less expensive to operate and there are units today with efficiencies as high as 98%. A heat pump is not a good solution for the northern climates, they don't work so good when winter temps crash.
Jackofall1, the OP lives in Mid-Southern IL, so in reality, a Heat Pump would be a better solution, with Geo-Thermal being the best. His supplier is a part of the Touchstone Energy group, so they are best to find out what rebates are offered, and then go from there in what gives the best payback for the long term. Especially depending on how long they plan on living there after they install the new unit.
Since it is a rural area they live in, I would opt for a Hybrid Heat-pump, or Geo, before going with a conventional system.
Zootjeff, April through Sept. are the most humid months here in Illinois, and I can tell you right now, this year has been a ***** with humidity. May, through early July so far this year has seen high heat indexes, with long runs for just A/C.
Yes I live in mid southern part of Illinois. I would to use the geo thermal if I can afford it. I will have to do more research on it. My dad has a gas furnace and he uses alot of ga through out the year that's why I asked everyone here what they thought. Thanks for your opinions. I will let you know what I go with.
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