(Mods: I had no idea where to put this, but thought this forum might get more traffic; move at will.) I looked at the DOE's heat calc spreadsheet and it looks running a heat pump could be comparable to a pellet boiler. ( http://www.eia.gov/neic/experts/heatcalc.xls ). I understand the new heat pumps like the Mitsuibishi Hyper Heat can heat when the temps go down pretty far. I have a colonial type of house and live near Albany, NY. We have an oil boiler hot water with baseboards with upstairs and downstairs zones. I have trouble keeping the upstairs warm during the winter. Also there is nothing automatic about feeding the wood insert and I'm not getting any younger. It might be nice to heat the basement too, every once in a while. I can see advantages to both. Pellet boiler, would still need feeding, though not as often. Relatviely tie into the existing pipes. The mini split would be automatic, but if I had one upstairs, say in the hall, I'm not sure if the heat would flow into the bedrooms; I think it might because the heat from the insert makes it there. I don't know how putting individual evaporator heads would work upstairs-running the line sets through the unheated attic, or snaking around on the outside of the house? Wouldn't heat the basement without another set; two sets (one for downstairs and one for upstairs, plus maybe multiple heads probably would start getting expensive.) Thoughts?