With the polar vortex hitting major parts of the country, it might pay to sit and talk about how to heat your home – especially since it takes up a pretty big portion of your utility bill.
In most cases, it’s not necessarily the best idea to move from forced air to central heating (or the other way around). What you might want to do is look at a more efficient version of the system you currently have in your home.
Zillow offered a quick rundown of the most commonly used heating systems to help warm up next year’s winter.
Gas furnaces are scored by the annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) rating. The rating shows how much energy is being converted to usable heat; furnaces are forced air and are the most commonly used system in the U.S.
Most modern furnaces reach an AFUE rating of 97% – so if your furnace needs an update, you’re in good hands.
Furnaces are inexpensive to install, have a long life span, and have low-maintenance. As far as negatives go, they can produce allergens, can cost more to run, and can be considered more dangerous.
There are three variations of heat pumps: air-source, split ductless, and geothermal. These systems work by utilizing the existing temperatures to heat, cool, and humidify your home.
These are incredibly efficient, can be used all year round, and naturally dehumidifies your home in the summer. Unfortunately, these can be nosier than other heating systems, can require more maintenance and upkeep, and isn’t necessarily the best for smaller homes.
These systems use water to distribute heat through either pipes or radiators. These can be used with natural gas, electricity, or propane.
They are quiet, don’t stir up allergies, and are usually more efficient than forced air systems. However, these heating systems are more expensive to install, can leak if damaged, and aren’t necessary for mild winters.