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Home Heating Systems: 5 Popular Options

Home Heating Systems: 5 Popular Options

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As a lazy summer quickly transitions into the fall and winter months, it’s time to reassess your home heating system once again. Heating consumes the greatest amount of energy in U.S. regions with colder climates, responsible for up to 50 percent of annual energy bills. If you’re redoing a heating system this fall, or installing one in a new home, you may be weighing your heating options, trying to determine the most efficient and affordable way to go. With that in mind, here are some of the best home heating systems for the modern, energy conscious homeowner:

1. Gas Furnace Central Heating:
Both natural gas and propane furnaces are popular among homeowners. Gas furnace systems typically use forced air to distribute heat from the furnace to the rest of the home. Both natural gas and forced air are the most affordable options in heating systems, and are very popular in colder climates. This system requires very careful planning of ductwork, and the air filtration will require regular maintenance to reduce allergens that are easily moved through the forced air system. The cost of gas furnace heating occurs in the maintenance.

2. Electric Furnace Central Heating:
Similar to the gas furnace, electric furnaces are part of a central heating system, which relies on forced air to heat the home. Electric furnaces are popular for their efficiency. They involve no combustible fuels, no flames, and they do not create exhaust or pollutants. You will find the downside to this type of heating in your monthly electric bill.

3. Geothermal Heat Pumps:
A variation on electric heat pumps, the geothermal heat pump uses underground piping to feed indoor heat pumps. By transferring heat from the ground, this system can cool the home in the summer and heat it in the winter. They are environmentally friendly, quiet and consistent, and save the homeowner considerable money after the initial installation.

4. Wood Furnace Heating:
Wood furnaces are popular for keeping costs down. Outdoor wood furnaces drastically reduce heating bills and the fire hazards of some indoor heating options. Wood furnaces, however, require a constant supply of wood, and still pose some fire threats. You may sacrifice in convenience what you save in costs.

5. Radiant Floor Heating:
This heating system uses hot water delivered through tubes installed in the floor of your home. Because the water must first be heated before being pumped out to rooms in the home, the home can be slow to heat up. In addition, radiant heating systems are complicated to install and maintain.

When choosing the best heating system for your home, it is always important to speak with a professional HVAC technician or home contractor. He or she will be able to help you determine the safest, most cost-effective, and most practical option for your home and climate.

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