The fall leaves are gone, and there’s a definite chill to the air. While the temperatures may not be extremely cold at the moment, you can be sure that winter is almost here. In order to enjoy the holidays with your family in a cozy & comfortable environment, it’s important to have the right heating system for your home. But what is the “right” system? It depends on a number of factors, including your current heating system, the size of your house, your budget, and if you’re willing to potentially spend a little more for a more energy-efficient system.
How big is your house?
The first factor in choosing a heating system is determining how much space needs to be heated. A professional can help you figure out the exact amount of space that will need to be kept at a comfortable temperature, and can recommend the right size system for your specific needs.
Are you building a new home?
When choosing the right heating system for a new home, you will need to bring professionals together, including your architect, contractor and an HVAC professional, to help determine what system will be the best option for your home. If you have an existing home, you may want to consider keeping your current system – there are many ways you can improve an existing system to make it more energy-efficient, including adding a programmable thermostat or improving ductwork. Improving a current system will likely be more budget-friendly than adding a brand new system from scratch.
What’s your budget?
The right heating system for you should fit within your budget. This is also an area where a professional can help guide you in selecting the best option. Do keep in mind, though, that factoring in energy savings when selecting a heating system may be important – it is very possible that an energy-efficient heater will cost you more money up front, but will result in significant savings over time.
Common Heating Systems
Forced-Air Heating: Forced-air heating systems are very common, and involve warmed air blown through ducts. They can be fueled either with natural gas, electricity, or oil, and technology advancements are making these systems more energy efficient.
Radiant Heating System: This type of heating system uses natural gas, electricity, or oil to heat water, which flows through radiators, baseboard panels, or aluminum panels installed in your home’s floor, walls, or ceiling. If you have allergies, this might be the best system for you, as it prevents pollutants from being blown through ducts. This system is also beneficial, as it doesn’t dry out the air in your home during the cooler months.
Heat Pumps: While this system may not work for areas that experience severe levels of cold, they can provide major energy savings to homeowners willing to make the initial investment for installation. Heat pumps use refrigerant to absorb heat from sources outside your home, and then use a transfer process to move that heat inside. As a bonus, this transfer process can be reversed to cool your home as well.
There are many factors to consider before selecting the perfect heating system for your property. Be sure to do your research before buying, and consider speaking with a professional who can provide information on installation costs and some sense of whether or not a particular system will meet your needs.