Here in the Tennessee Valley, heat pumps have become a very popular option for heating and cooling homes. That’s because heat pumps are exceptionally efficient in the climate we have here, with temperatures staying above freezing for most of the year. But the one downside of heat pumps is that they become less efficient when the weather gets colder.
When the outside temperature drops below about 40F, a heat pump may not be able to keep your home comfortable without the use of auxiliary heat. With most heat pumps, that auxiliary heat takes the form of electric resistance heat, which is far less efficient than the heat pump itself. That means very cold weather can result in unexpectedly high utility bills due to the auxiliary heat running.
Daikin’s packaged dual fuel unit (also known as a hybrid unit) provides a solution to this problem. Dual fuel or hybrid units combine a heat pump with a gas furnace in order to provide efficient, effective heating in all kinds of winter weather.
See Also: Packaged Products
How Does a Dual Fuel Unit Work?
A Daikin packaged dual fuel unit is essentially two units in one box. Inside that box, there’s a Daikin 14 SEER heat pump alongside a Daikin 80% AFUE gas furnace. The heat pump provides cooling in the summer and heating during milder winter weather. But instead of turning on expensive electric auxiliary heat on those coldest winter days, the unit automatically switches on the gas furnace. The gas furnace keeps your home cozy even in the coldest weather while still being more efficient than the standard electric resistance auxiliary heat.
The Best of Both Worlds
Essentially, with a Daikin packaged dual fuel unit you’re getting the best features of both a gas furnace and a heat pump. In other words, you get to enjoy the exceptional efficiency of a heat pump—at the temperatures at which it’s most efficient—along with the reliable heating of a gas furnace on those coldest days. And it’s all packaged in a single, self-contained unit that sits outside of your home.
Features of the Heat Pump
- The 14 SEER heat pump in the dual fuel unit uses a scroll compressor. Scroll compressors have fewer moving parts than traditional compressors, so they’re generally quieter and have longer lifespans with fewer breakdowns. They’re also highly energy efficient.
- The heat pump also uses refrigeration-grade premium copper tubing and has aluminum fin condenser coil configuration. These features maximize its ability to transfer heat. Again, this makes the unit more energy-efficient, saving you money on those monthly bills.
- The heat pump in the dual fuel unit uses R-410A refrigerant, which is more efficient and better for the environment than the old R-22.
Features of the Gas Furnace
As for the gas furnace component of the Daikin packaged dual fuel unit, it has an AFUE rating of 80%. That means that 80% of the fuel energy used by the furnace gets turned into heat for your home. To achieve this level of efficiency, the Daikin gas furnace uses a heavy-duty stainless steel heat exchanger. This dual-diameter heat exchanger is tubular and formed using wrinklebend technology that makes it both durable and excellent at transferring heat.
See Also: Glossary of Common HVAC Terms
Moving the Air
As for the blower motor that is responsible for circulating your home’s air through the system:
- The Daikin packaged dual fuel unit uses an energy-efficient ECM multi-speed motor.
- The multi-speed motor makes the unit more energy-efficient compared to units with single-speed motors.
- That’s because a unit with a multi-speed motor can adjust to the conditions inside of your home instead of simply turning on or off.
- This allows the motor to only run as fast as necessary and can also increase the run time of the unit.
- Increasing the run time is actually more energy efficient because it means fewer starts and stops.
- During the summer, increased run-time also helps to lower the humidity inside of your home.
- It keeps your home’s temperature more consistent, improving comfort as well as efficiency.
- The blower compartment is fully insulated to reduce wasted energy and has convenient access panels for service technicians.
- The entire unit is protected from the outdoor elements by a heavy-gauge galvanized steel cabinet.
Daikin stands behind the quality of their packaged dual fuel units with great warranty coverage. First, the dual fuel unit includes a 6-Year Unit Replacement Limited Warranty along with a 12-Year Parts Limited Warranty. For the gas furnace component, the dual fuel unit also includes a Lifetime Heat Exchanger Limited Warranty that’s good for as long as you own your home.
All of these warranties require online registration within 60 days of purchase. The Unit Replacement Limited Warranty also has requirements for annual maintenance.
Who says you can’t have it all? With a Daikin packaged dual-fuel unit, you can have the exceptional efficiency of a heat pump and the reliable comfort of a gas furnace on those cold winter nights, all in one convenient, self-contained package. Purchasing a new HVAC system for your home is an important long-term investment. Consider all the options available, and talk to your Comfort Consultant to help you choose the best system for your home and family.