As we begin to move into the cold months of winter, people are beginning to think about the state of their heating system. After maintenance and repairs, upgrades are the most common reason that HVAC professionals are called during this season. If the sheer amount of options for heating your home this winter seems daunting, don’t worry. We’ve assembled some information to help you make the right choice.
A furnace is a quite common and reliable option for heating your home. Furnaces are the core of forced air systems, heating air through combustion and circulating it throughout the house using a fan. Oil, wood, and natural gas are common fuel sources, though natural gas is the most widely available.
Boilers distribute heat through water instead of air. This necessitates running pipes throughout the house instead of ductwork. There are a number of options for boiler systems, often referred to as “radiant” heating systems. Baseboard heaters and radiators are more traditional methods of distributing the thermal energy throughout the home. Recently, however, pipes installed in the walls and subfloor of a room have also become popular. Boilers, like furnaces, can burn a number of fuels. Again, natural gas tends to be the most common.
Heat pumps are forced air systems that have a couple of unique advantages associated with them. The first advantage is that a heat pump can operate as both a heater and air conditioner. This is accomplished through a reversing valve that can reverse the flow of refrigerant between the indoor and outdoor units of the heat pump. This obviously saves you the cost of having one unit for each function, as most homes do.
A heat pump is named for its ability to move heat from one space to another. When in heating mode, the outdoor unit will actually absorb thermal energy from the air around it and direct it into the house. Utilizing this thermal energy saves money on your heating bills, because the heat pump doesn’t have to work as hard as other heating systems. This is the second advantage to installing a heat pump.
If you are interested in installing a new heating system for your home in Hamilton this winter, call Bartels Heating & Cooling.