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Give Your Heat Pump a Helping Hand


January 02, 2015   By Willard Strong in Reduce The Use
By the time you read this, we will have endured another cold snap.

For us genteel southerners of the Southeast, this meant morning temperatures in the upper teens and a day when it barely got above freezing.

I'm fond of saying we really don't know what cold is, a position heartily affirmed by co-workers who grew up far north of the Lowcountry. We live in the "heat pump belt." Since the heat pump was perfected in the mid-1960s, it largely replaced window air-conditioning units, a lifestyle-altering development that made Southern summers less brutal and bearable. In the winter, it magically heated our homes with the flip of a switch.

While some window units feature an electric heat option, most just offer relief from oppressive high temperatures and humidity. In the pre-heat pump era, I lived in a house that had oil heat, and back in the early 1960s a gallon of heating oil was in the 25-cents-a-gallon range, or even less.

I... Continue Reading >>