It’s coming upon that time of the year again. Fall is fast approaching and you need to begin considering what you’ll be doing as far as heating options. We’re a San Francisco based HVAC company, so we know it gets cold in the winter. If you live someplace like Hawaii or Florida, this doesn’t really apply to you! However, for the states that get colder in winter, you need to begin thinking about cleaning your furnace, cleaning your ducts, and possibly cleaning your chimney. It all depends on the type of heating you system you currently have or the type of system you plan on installing.
Many of the modern homes already have central heating and air conditioning installed, but you should know that there are other options to go with if you are looking for a heating solution. Some considerations when installing a heating option are 1) what type of fuel is required to heat the home? 2) what are the costs associated with the heating option? 3) are there health reasons why you should not choose a certain heating option? 4) what are the maintenance costs and concerns with that heating system? You can see that there are many important options to be concerned with when choosing a heating system, so let’s look at the most popular heating options out there and weigh their pros and cons.
Water Based Central Heating – Suffice it to say that there is a lot of work involved in installing a central heating solution. For one, the installation of a boiler or furnace is necessary, and these can be bulky and unsightly. Add to that, the fact that numerous pipes need to be installed that radiate out from the radiator in order to heat the house. The cost of materials is high in this type of installation, and the planning needs to be extensive for it to work properly. However, once the system is installed the cost of operation is low and the system usually only needs to be maintained once a year.
Forced Air – The forced air system is a system that pushes around heated air to the rest of your home via ducts. The amount of labor involved in the installation is extensive because numerous ducts need to be planned out and installed, as well as a furnace. However, on the upside, you can install a high efficiency furnace that runs on a variety of different fuel options, including gas, electricity, or oil…and they don’t require a chimney for ventilation! The cost of maintenance is low and the longevity of the system is fairly high if regularly maintained…up to 20 years life expectancy! The downside is that those who suffer from allergies or other breathing issues may not appreciate the forced air with allergens and pollutants being pushed through the home.
Electric Baseboard Heating – The great news is that this option has the lowest installation costs. Each room’s temperature is controlled separately as each room has its own unit installed. The downside to this system is that the operational costs are extremely high and they can create an extremely dry environment, requiring the use of a humidifier to alleviate some of the problem. Of course, running a humidifier would incur additional costs.
These are the three most common types of heating systems that are in use today. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages. Choose wisely, and make sure that you keep it maintained regularly, so you can stay toasty warm in the colder months.