Lower your home heating costs with a dual fuel heating system

Published: Dec. 12, 2016 at 9:32 AM CST
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US Energy experts say home heating costs are going up this year. For those using natural gas and heating oil the costs are increasing by double digits.

Many homeowners who want to stay toasty without breaking the bank invest in hybrid furnaces or dual fuel heat systems. A hybrid furnace, one that uses an electric heat pump in conjunction with a gas furnace, costs a little more than a standard HVAC system, but will pay for itself over time by operating more efficiently and lowering those monthly bills.

"If electricity prices are high in your area, then you might want to heat your house with a gas furnace. The same thing applies if gas prices are high in your area and you have low electrical rates, a hybrid system is probably going to be ideal for you" says heating and cooling professional Ryan Robertson.

"A hybrid system or a heat pump are actually best in climates that don't have extreme weather, so if you're in an area with extreme hot and cold, you really want to stick with a traditional HVAC system" explains Angie’s List founder Angie Hicks.

If you are thinking of going to a dual fuel system, you may be able to do it in pieces; just adding the heat pump to a furnace that's still in good shape.

Angie says to expect a hybrid system to cost about 10-15% more than a conventional system, but a federal tax rebate is still available through the end of the year. Most systems carry a 10 year warranty, but can easily last twice that long if properly maintained.