What Are My Options for Better Home Heating

What Are My Options for Better Home Heating

Every home has a complex network of systems working just below the surface, working nonstop to give the people who live there all the modern comforts they might need. One of the most important of these systems is your heating system, keeping your home nice and toasty in even the coldest months of the year. You might not be able to see your heating in action, but you can certainly tell when it isn’t up to snuff.

If you feel like you’re in need of better home heating, we have great news. The modern homeowner has plenty of options to find the heating system that’s best for any situation. That may seem like an overwhelming choice, but we’re happy to lend you our home heating expertise to help make a decision. Here are just a few of your options for better home heating.

Get Whole-Home Consistency with a Forced Air

The vast majority of homes in the United States utilize a central furnace and forced air for their heating needs. These furnaces heat air using a variety of fuels, such as natural gas, oil, or electricity. Then that heated air is circulated throughout the home via a network of ducts installed in the walls. Forced air is definitely one of the better home heating options, as its universal use means the technology is readily available.

Additionally, furnaces are becoming more and more advanced. Newer models are becoming increasingly energy-efficient, helping you cut down on your fuel consumption. If you have an existing forced-air system, you have plenty of options to retrofit it to increase its efficiency to modern standards. Some homeowners are even taking the extra step to add air-purifying technology into their ductwork, enabling their forced-air systems to clean the air while they moderate the indoor temperature.

The one major drawback to a forced-air system is that if your house doesn’t already have the ductwork, it can be an ordeal to add. Still, many homeowners find a forced-air system to be the best way to fulfill their home heating needs.

Avoid Circulating Pollutants with Radiant Heat

When we say radiant heating, images may spring to mind of your very first, very tiny, apartment. We’ve all lived with that old radiator in the corner, providing all the heat for your one and a half rooms. While we’re sure that old metal monster is still kicking somewhere out there, we can assure you that’s not what you have to put in your home. Modern radiant heat technology has come a long way, and it’s still one of the better home heating options on the market.

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The principle is the same, most systems use a boiler to heat water, which is then pumped throughout the home to provide heat. Today, however, you have a much wider variety of devices to distribute that heat. Baseboard radiators are a much less obtrusive option, as are aluminum panels that can be built right into the walls of the home. One of the most popular options, both among people and household pets, is radiant floor heating. It works by installing the radiator element underneath the floor itself, which allows heat to rise right up from under your feet. Why wake up to another chilly morning when you dread to crawl out from the warm covers and set foot on the ice-cold floor when you can just preheat them?

There are, of course, still some drawbacks to a radiant heat system. Copper piping is often used in their construction, so installing one from scratch can be a bit pricey. Also, you can’t bundle an air-conditioning or purifying system along with it, like you can with a forced-air system. That being said, it’s still a reliable and effective home heating solution.

Get Flexibility with Heat Pumps

Heat pumps are a relatively new form of indoor climate control, and they’re becoming a more and more popular choice for homeowners. They’re complicated machines, but to put it simply, they work by transferring heat from one area to another. Since they operate independently of a larger, in-home system, they offer some unique advantages compared to more traditional central heating systems such as forced air or radiant heat.

They aren’t wired into a larger network, so they can provide better-focused home heating for individual rooms. This offers a level of precision that most centralized systems can’t achieve, allowing you to adjust the temperature of each space in your home independently. This also makes them ideal if you have an existing heating system but find yourself needing to heat a space outside of it, such as a garage or an addition.

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Heat pumps can also be used to cool your home when the summer rolls around. All you need to do is reverse the direction of the heat exchange. Best of all, they’re one of the most energy-efficient forms of home heating available. You’ll be able to keep your home running a bit greener, saving money along the way.

For all their versatility, a heat pump isn’t perfect for every situation. They’re very dependent on your environment, and colder climates can lower their efficiency, or they can even break down entirely. But in the temperate nature of the Pacific Northwest climate, they’ll work just fine.

Have it Both Ways with a Ductless System

Ductless heating systems are an interesting option for home heating, combining the flexibility of a heat pump with the infrastructure of a central heating system. They utilize the same technology as a heat pump but work off a single outdoor unit instead of individual ones for each area. The outdoor unit exchanges heat with the exterior climate then distributes the heating or the cooling through a network of refrigerant lines to indoor air handlers. The air handlers manage the temperatures of each room, allowing you to heat or cool them independently of each other.

Ductless systems benefit from the energy efficiency that most heat pumps offer while avoiding the heat loss that comes with ductwork. Installation can also be relatively easy. Instead of having to hang a heat pump in every room, you just need to have the refrigerant lines installed in each room you want a handler in.

The main problems you’ll face with a ductless system are the installation costs and maintenance. Since ductless systems are still relatively new. There aren’t many budget-friendly options on the market yet. They also require regular cleaning and maintenance, ideally from a trained and certified professional. If you want the latest and greatest when it comes to home heating, though, they’re definitely worth considering.

At Entek, we’re dedicated to providing better home heating to all our customers. So whether you’re looking to upgrade your old system or install a brand-new one, give us a call. We’ll be with you every step along the way.

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