Comparing Your Home Heating Options
Heating your home has limitless options, each with its benefits. When deciding to supplement your current home heating system, there are five main options to choose from: pellet stoves, wood stoves, heat pumps, passive solar, and natural gas. While exploring which home heating system is right for you, it is important to consider the cost, environmental impact, and heating efficiency.
The costs associated with home heating depend on the type of system, the fuel it requires, and the installation costs. Take passive solar heating, for example: seeing as there is no fuel or equipment required, the cost of heating is $0. However, a home must be adequately insulated and have a particular layout for heating to be effective. The installation and home alteration costs can be quite expensive. Some heat pump systems also feature expensive installation costs because of the ducting that is required.
Wood, natural gas, and pellet stoves tend to be more affordable, despite needing fuel and installation. However, wood and natural gas stoves create quite the bill in installation costs, as they require a chimney or direct vent systems. Pellet stoves are the most economical option of the three. The stove itself averages around $2,000, and installation simply requires a hole in the wall for venting.
All five of these heating systems are kind to the environment. While wood, pellet, and natural gas stoves are all EPA certified, pellet and wood stoves are the more environmentally friendly options since they consume entirely organic materials. Natural gas stoves do not necessarily harm the environment, but the propane they require for fuel is a non-renewable resource.
Passive solar and heat pumps, on the other hand, are the “greener” of the heating options. They heat your home with nothing more than the sunlight and the environment, both renewable resources. They also do not create any type of output that could negatively impact the environment.
Efficiency is also important to consider when entering the market for a new home heating source. First, you must determine if you are looking for something efficient enough to heat your entire home or if you are just in the market for something to work alongside your current heating system. Wood, natural gas, and pellet stoves, as well as ducted heat pumps, are all capable of heating your home on their own. In a home with the ideal layout, passive solar heat can also fully heat your home, but that depends on several factors. Passive solar and ductless heat pumps are more likely to work alongside your current home heating systems. All three stoves can also be used as a supplemental heating source if you want to replace your current system.
There is a lot to consider when transitioning to a new home heating system, but there are options for every consumer. Whether you are looking for something cost-effective, environmentally-friendly, or efficient enough to heat your whole home, some endless systems and combinations will work for you!