September 30, 2022

Faces, Places & Voices Of Poudre Valley REA – Terry Willis

Human Interest Stories

How a Heat Pump Can Meet Your Heating & Cooling Needs

As we enter the fall season, it’s a great time to share how one member has found comfort and efficiency for their heating and cooling needs by using a high-efficiency variable speed heat pump.

We met Terry at his home in Windsor, where he and his wife, Janelle, have lived for over 24 years.

Their house was cool and quiet, thanks in part to the mild September afternoon. But Terry was quick to point out how satisfied he has been year after year since installing his heat pump.

“Truthfully after it was put in, it totally changed the comfort of the house,” Terry said.

A continuously running fan constantly circulates air throughout the house – automatically heating or cooling the air to their desired temperature while filtering particulates and increasing the overall comfort of their home. Setting the humidifier to run continuously also, “made a world of difference (while heating) last winter,” according to Terry.

He said he loves how quiet the system is, not hearing the rush of air as the system starts up or the constant loud hum of a fan like in his old furnace/AC combo.

Choosing the Right System

With a 20-year-old heating and cooling system, Terry needed a replacement. He recalled how heat pumps had a bad reputation when he first heard about them.

“Thirty years ago, heat pumps had a terrible name, a bad reputation,” Terry said. “Of course, they aren’t the same heat pumps they are today.”

The certainly aren’t! Modern cold climate heat pumps can heat homes efficiently in sub-zero temperatures, even as low as -25 F. A heat pump can transfer 300% more energy than it consumes, compared to a high-efficiency gas furnace’s 95% rating.

We recommend variable speed or cold climate heat pumps to not only keep you more comfortable, but also maximize your savings during heating and cooling seasons.

Making the Change

Terry found information about the current benefits of variable speed heat pumps by reading his Colorado Country Life Magazine.

Terry then tried his hand at finding a local installer he could trust. “It got real confusing quick,” Terry said. “I thought I would get three different bids and I could compare apples to apples.”

So, he called his local co-op. We provided him honest information about heat pumps and put him in touch with one of our Select HVAC Installers – people we’ve vetted to do good work.

Together, they calculated Terry’s square footage, along with vent locations and planned home expansions, to determine what size system would meet his current and future heating and cooling needs.

For the most part it was a one-day installation, with clean up and preference settings on the second day. They come back each spring and fall to replace filters and check his system’s settings, updating them as their needs change.

Terry even said if he has issues, they can connect directly to his system via his home’s WIFI network to run diagnostics.

Terry’s Final Thoughts

“The electric rate has been stable, and declining,” Terry said. “There’s advantage of the dual fuel system now with natural gas going up in price.”

One major contributing factor Terry said compelled him to install his heat pump was the rebates that were available for him. “The big sell thing is the rebates help compensate for the additional cost of the heat pumps,” Terry pointed out. His new system came in at about the same price as a furnace/AC combo, with the added comfort and efficiency that comes with a heat pump.

Overall, Terry had this to say: “There is a lot of value to this dual fuel system, and I highly recommend it.”

If you’re interested in learning how a heat pump could meet your heating and cooling needs, find resources and rebate information online at

For a list of Select HVAC Installers, go to

We’d like to thank Terry and Janelle for welcoming us into their lovely home and sharing their story with us, and their fellow PVREA members.