We used to firmly be of the camp that you really only need AC in Victoria for a few days a year. Extensive renovations on Casa de Fugger saw us removing all of our baseboard heaters and adding zoned venting, an electric heat pump and a natural gas furnace backup.
Just before the first hot spell of the year, I called our HVAC consultant at West Bay (who did a marvellous job sizing and installing the system) to see the best way to use the system. He said to fire the system up at least the night before, so that all of your possessions (e.g., furniture, mainly) cool down and stay that way. And then to set it at one level for all of the time (no bringing it down while we are away at work) and then fuggedaboutit. We did - the house was an amazing temperature all summer. The heat pump was going near constant and so I was getting nervous about the hydro bill. Turns out the difference between the previous two month period and the two month period where I ran it 24/7 was the princely sum of FIVE DOLLARS for a bill that ended up being less than $100 anyway (all of our appliances are natural gas except for the dryer)! I couldn't believe it.
In the winter, the heating was about the same - ran it way warmer than we used to run it via baseboard and the bill was under $100. Now, it was an almost $20k outlay (minus $2k in Costco gift cards that we were rebated, as we booked through them), but my winter bills were in the $400-500 range (bi-monthly). That is a helluva ROI for such a major purchase and is a real game changer. I won't live and would be hard pressed to stay anywhere without a system like this.
Edited by Bob Fugger, 17 September 2018 - 08:57 AM.