When was the last time you replaced the heating equipment in your home? If your answer is "decades ago," then prepare to be amazed as you start shopping around for new heating equipment. Home heating systems have changed a lot recently. They've become more efficient, more customizable, and easier to use. Keep reading for a look at a few of the specific innovations that have hit the heating industry over the past decades.
1. Heat Pumps
Traditionally, heaters have burned some sort of fuel to generate heat. This fuel is usually either natural gas, propane, or heating oil. Burning these fossil fuels is not the healthiest option for the planet, however. For this reason, heat pumps have become more popular. These heat pumps do not burn anything to generate heat. Rather, they move or pump heat. In the winter, they move that heat from outside to inside. This process is powered by electricity, which can be obtained from more earth-friendly power sources like sunshine and wind.
There are two types of heat pump systems that have become more common in homes over the years. One is called the air source heat pump; it harnesses heat from the outdoor air. The other is called a geothermal heat pump. It consists of pipes that run far underground, harnessing heat from this deep-down soil and water.
2. Zoned Systems
Say you live in a 2,000 square foot house. You probably spend most of your time in a couple of rooms in that house. So it would be a waste to keep the whole home at 72 degrees all winter, right? Zoned heating systems are becoming more common; they let you control the temperature of various parts of your home independently. In other words, you could keep your kitchen and living room at 70, but the spare bedroom you never use at 62. Or your child who likes to sleep in a warm room could keep theirs at 70, while you keep yours at 65. Zoned systems let everyone be more comfortable at home, and they also save you money on energy.
3. Condensing Furnaces
Most furnaces that are installed in homes these days are condensing furnaces. They operate in two stages, rather than the single stage that traditional furnaces operate in. First, they burn the heating fuel (like any other furnace). Then, they extract heat from the waste gas before it is exhausted via the chimney. This process is known as condensing. Condensing furnaces are able to generate more heat per unit of fuel than standard furnaces. This helps keep fuel bills low, and it is also good for the planet. Today's condensing furnaces also tend to be better sealed than standard furnaces, so they don't let as much heat escape and be wasted.
4. Airflow Accelerators
Airflow accelerators as basically fans that your HVAC contractor can place within your ducts. They can be placed at specific locations in order to encourage more air to flow into certain vents. These have been around for a long time, but only recently have they become quite common in homes. A couple of properly placed airflow accelerators can allow your home to heat more evenly. You won't find yourself constantly turning the thermostat up a little higher and a little higher to get that one room warm, all the while over-warming the others.
The heating industry has experienced a lot of innovation over the past few years. Take advantage of these new and more popular technologies when the time comes to have your system replaced or modified. Your HVAC contractor will be happy to tell you more.
To learn more, contact a local heating service.