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Old 12-09-2009, 01:34 PM
 
Location: New Jersey/Florida
5,441 posts, read 10,527,852 times
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I was interested in purchasing a new home in a development in Sussex County. A question I have is it is heated by electric only. 2,500 square ft ranch. Years ago in NJ I had a summer house and it only had baseboard electric heat. The bills were crazy to heat that small ranch. Can anyone give me their views and thoughts of heating a home with electric only. Thanks JM.
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Old 12-09-2009, 02:00 PM
 
Location: Winter Garden, FL
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certainly could be an expensive option if you like to keep it warm or if the system cannot be zoned to keep non-essential areas heated less than more used rooms - houses that were set like that were made for someone not living there in the colder months - sounds like a lot of places I've seen in Jersey along the shore communities

if you are concerned about the cost living there in the winter, you could install a pellet wood stove in the house and let it do most of the heating work for you - install and purchase costs could be under $3k and fuel is fairly cheap but requires someone to watch for adding pellets (every other day or so) and requires you to clean up some ash once per week
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Old 12-10-2009, 05:56 PM
 
Location: New Jersey/Florida
5,441 posts, read 10,527,852 times
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Thanks phlydude, Does anyone heat their house with electric that can chime in. Thanks JM
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Old 12-10-2009, 06:25 PM
 
200 posts, read 507,936 times
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I can't imagine that there is any new house in Delaware that is heated by resistive electric heat. It is probably a heat pump system. Sure, it runs on electricity but on a different principle... you get more heat out than electric energy put in because it moves heat from outside in. Only on the coldest days does it get as costly as pure resistive electric.
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Old 12-10-2009, 08:12 PM
 
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I have electric/heat pump and live in South East PA. Normally in the month of December I would have an electric bill of $150. When I had my heat pump go out the electric bill for the month of December last year was close to $400. My house is only 1400 sq ft. If you are talking strictly electric (and not electric/heat pump) count on your bills during the winter to be at least 2X's as much. As a point of reference electric during the summer months (don't use the A/C very much) run about $85 per month.

Mary
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Old 12-11-2009, 05:35 AM
 
Location: New Jersey/Florida
5,441 posts, read 10,527,852 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kanling View Post
I can't imagine that there is any new house in Delaware that is heated by resistive electric heat. It is probably a heat pump system. Sure, it runs on electricity but on a different principle... you get more heat out than electric energy put in because it moves heat from outside in. Only on the coldest days does it get as costly as pure resistive electric.
Thanks kanling. Yes it has a heat pump. I don't fully understand this concept.
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Old 12-12-2009, 04:43 PM
 
200 posts, read 507,936 times
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There are probably some nice descriptions of how heat pumps work online. But, it is just like a refrigerator or air conditioner running in reverse.

If you pressurize a gas it gets hot, if you de-pressurize it gets cold. So in the winter, you de-pressurize outside at the outdoor unit which then gets really cold. Heat from the outside air warms the pumped gas up slightly. It gets pumped back in the house and re-pressurized where it gets hotter and dumps the heat into the inside air.

Since it is cold outside in the winter and warm inside, the temperature differences are fairly small. Some people with heat pumps complain that the air that comes out of the vents is cold. That is true for people that are used to gas or oil heat where the air is hot. In reality the air that comes out of the vents is only a few degrees warmer than the inside air. Also, on REALLY cold days, the heat pump can't get the outdoor coil colder than the outside air temp. Then a backup heater (that is usually pure resistive electric) kicks on. But in modern systems, this doesn't happen too often.

Sellers of heat pumps will say that heat pumps are the most efficient way to heat. As long as it is not super cold outside, this is true. However, electricity is one of the most expensive forms of energy, so just because heat pumps are the most efficient doesn't mean they are the cheapest to operate.

For a climate like Delaware, heat pumps are a good choice. If I were to build a house in an area that didn't have natural gas service, I'm pretty sure I would choose a heat pump. I have lived in many places with heat pumps and never had a problem with the 'cold' air from the vents. And I think the total cost including fuel, initial cost of the equipment, and maintenance heat pumps have an edge.
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Old 12-12-2009, 08:53 PM
 
Location: NC, USA
7,088 posts, read 13,050,035 times
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Ok, granted I'm in a slightly different region than you, but, our heat pump has saved us a lot of money, yeah, it was expensive,but, will recoup the purchase price within six years with the savings on both heat and AC. I know it is hard to believe, but, outside, right now, as I type, it is 23 degrees.
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Old 12-13-2009, 05:44 PM
 
Location: New Jersey/Florida
5,441 posts, read 10,527,852 times
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Thanks Mary and Dusty,
I guess in NJ it gets to cold for heat pumps to work efficiently as I do not know anyone using them. I have been googling heat pumps online to get theidea on how it functions so i'm a little scared to jump into it. We have had natural gas most of our life so I'm used to it. Thanks again guys. The saleswoman says heat pumps are more efficient than propane any thoughts to this. JM
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Old 12-13-2009, 06:10 PM
 
Location: Murfreesboro, TN
3,528 posts, read 7,325,840 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JERSEY MAN View Post
Thanks Mary and Dusty,
I guess in NJ it gets to cold for heat pumps to work efficiently as I do not know anyone using them. I have been googling heat pumps online to get theidea on how it functions so i'm a little scared to jump into it. We have had natural gas most of our life so I'm used to it. Thanks again guys. The saleswoman says heat pumps are more efficient than propane any thoughts to this. JM
I live in TN and practically everyone here has a heat pump and it's great. Our entire house is electric (heat, stove, water heater, dryer) and for a family of four in an 1800 sq. ft. house our electric bill is always $200 or less. I lived in New Jersey until I was 26 and it gets just as cold in TN as it does in NJ. The only difference is that our winters are a little shorter. Our homes are "Energy Right" certified and I don't know actually how much of a difference that makes.
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