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LWV Los Altos Mountain View
PO Box 3492
Los Altos, CA 94024
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Climate Action

Switch to All Electric Home Heating and Cooling
By Donna Davies
Posted: 2024-01-19T20:32:00Z

About seven years ago, a neighbor showed me her home remodel which included an all electric heat pump by Mitsubishi. The clean design of the HVAC was nice and she reassured me it was very quiet. I was also impressed that she and her husband were such early pioneers in making the shift to clean energy, to a healthier environment, and to leading the way to a fossil free future. Here's how I followed her a couple of years later.


The compressor unit installed outside in our backyard.

A heat pump also cools a home and as our house wasn’t air conditioned, my husband wanted to add that comfort. Even though our gas furnace was still working, it sounded like a 747 on takeoff, in a storm, without enough pretzels on board.



The mini-split in the dining room


I invited HVAC contractors to estimate the work for our postage stamp sized house using a central air-handling system in the attic with rebuilt ducts traveling through the attic and another estimate based on the unit sitting outside connected to mini-split units in various rooms. Estimates for both were over $21,000. When the third contractor bid, I negotiated with them and as it was off season, they gave us a very significant discount. This was long before the Tech Clean rebates and tax credits were in place! The work was completed in five days. We decided to go with the compressor outside and mini-splits mounted high on the interior walls.


However, now we think it would have been better to restore the ductwork in the attic and have the warm air piped through the whole house rather than installing the four mini-splits. In that way, the heat would be more even and enter every room. But the system is very efficient and quiet and I appreciate not having to use natural gas.



A mini-split in a bedroom


If you are curious about how they work, look at this excellent presentation from The Guardian.


Begin by selecting one of BayREN’s contractors so you can receive a heat pump rebate up to $400 and up to $1000 on insulation and ductwork.


Visit Tech Clean California to find out about the program to receive up to $3950 for heat pumps and up to $2800 for electrical panel upgrades. There is also a $2000 Federal Tax Credit on heat pumps. The Switch is On is also a good place to explore for more information and rebates.