Comfort Bear, here. As much as I love talking about heating systems, I really can’t enjoy them. My fur keeps me way too warm, and I’m not about to have it trimmed any time soon (but ask me again in the summer). For you hairless bears, however, heating systems might be the perfect thing to keep you warm through the fall and winter.
Today, I can tell you all about the clever ways that humans have learned to heat up their homes.
I think we can all relate to this feeling:
You’ve been swimming in some below 0°F water looking for some tasty seals to snack on. When you finally get out of the water, you’re completely soaked with icy water. If only the air could be nice and hot… But it can! That’s what forced-air heaters are for.
These are the most commonly used in the whole country. They’re inexpensive, easy to install, and they can last nearly 15 years. They use natural gas as a fuel source, which makes them quite cheap to operate. When looking for HVAC services in Kansas City, you should have no problem finding a contractor who does furnace installation.
You should also consider heat pumps. Instead of burning natural gas, these heaters use electricity to transfer warmth. For example, icebergs melt because the warmth of the air is being transferred to the iceberg. Heat pumps emulate that process by using a chemical called refrigerant. They take warm air from outside your house and transfer it to the inside. This process can be reversed in the summer, too, allowing it to be an air conditioner and a heater in one.
Geothermal Heat Pumps
The heat pump we just talked about takes heat from the air and puts it into your home. A geothermal heat pump does the same thing, but it takes that heat from the ground!
Back in the Arctic, it got so cold that the top of the water freezes over. Yet, underneath the ice, the water stays warm enough that it doesn’t freeze. The same thing happens on the land, too. Even if the air outside gets close to 0°F, the temperature underneath the ground stays between 45-55°F.
This means that geothermal heat pumps can provide efficient heating no matter what time of year. They’re also rated to last nearly 50 years, making them lifelong investments.
Forced-air heaters use air to carry heat through the home. Boilers, however, circulate hot water through pipes in the floors or the walls. The heat that radiates from these pipes warms you and the objects in the room. Using a boiler feels much more like sitting next to a campfire.
Boilers are more complex than forced-air systems, however. This means they require a more complicated installation. But that’s made up for with many unique benefits:
- Energy Efficiency: They transfer heat more effectively than forced-air heaters, meaning that you’ll spend less on energy every month.
- More Even Heating: Forced-air heaters blow hot air in the room, and then that air must gradually spread to the rest of the room. Boilers do-away with this problem through radiant heating.
- Longer Service Life: Boilers don’t have as many moving parts as forced-air heaters. You can expect them to last several years longer than furnaces.