Perhaps your old furnace is showing obvious signs of needing to be replaced, you are about to undertake a major home remodel, or would simply like to make some upgrades around your home to make it more energy-efficient and green. When deciding to replace your furnace, you may want to consider these alternative heating system ideas instead of a conventional furnace:
Ductless Mini Splits
Ductless mini splits are flexible heating and cooling systems that often lead to significant energy savings. Ductless mini splits work by linking up an outdoor unit to individual room units which easily attach to your wall, take up little space, and are plugged into the nearest electrical outlet. The outside unit cools or heats outside air and then pumps it into your home, quickly heating or cooling each room with minimal use of energy.
Ductless mini splits are a great way to get zoned heating and cooling, and most people find they prefer to have an individual unit in each bedroom as well as the main living space, allowing maximum comfort and flexibility. Since mini splits do not involve ductwork, they are often cheaper and easier to install during a renovation, and eliminate the need for regular duct cleanings. They can also be less expensive to install and maintain than traditional heating and air conditioning systems, since one system works to both cool and heat the home.
Geothermal Heat Pump
Geothermal heat pumps take advantage of the relatively constant and consistently comfortable temperatures of the earth just below the ground. Using an underground buried pipe and pump system, geothermal heat pumps transfer heat from the ground into your home in the winter, and pump hot air from your home into the ground in the summer, keeping your home comfortable year-round. Geothermal heat pump systems are low maintenance, durable thanks to being located underground and not vulnerable to the elements, and very energy efficient.
Solar Panel Heating
While you may not be interested in converting your entire home to solar energy, an affordable alternative is to have a solar heating and cooling system installed. These solar heating and cooling systems rely on energy collected from the sun to heat and cool your home as well as your water, while still allowing you to use traditional electricity to power your lights and electricity. They are typically much smaller and more affordable than whole house solar systems, requiring only a panel or two instead of an entire roof worth of solar panels.
Since 75% of the average residential home's energy usage is related to heating and cooling, this can result in dramatic energy bill savings for the average family, while also reducing your family's carbon footprint.
In a smaller space that doesn't require much energy to heat, a pellet stove can be a simple and affordable alternative to central heating. Pellet stoves burn compressed wood pellets instead of wood logs, making them a safer and more modern alternative to a traditional wood stove. Unlike an old-fashioned wood stove, a pellet stove is clean-burning and not smoky, and offers far more control over your home's temperature than wood-burning stoves.
A pellet stove can be used alone in a small space or as a complementary source of heat when combined with one of the other options on this list or a conventional furnace.
The heating system that works best for you will depend on your home's size, your local climate, and your budget and preferences. An experienced heating and air conditioning company will help you evaluate your furnace needs and decide on the best option for your unique circumstances, so reach out to a professional like Shakley Mechanical Inc.