When it comes to purchasing a new computer, television, bicycle, or even a simple lightbulb, most people want the best item they can afford. They want the fastest system, the clearest picture, the bike that requires the least maintenance, the most efficient bulb. The “best” is sometimes hard to define, but a lot easier when you spend a lot of time interacting with those items. When it comes to finding the “best” heating system, it’s a bit of a mystery.
In large part, finding the best heating system for a home is so difficult because there’s no easy answer. There is no one heater to rule them all. The best heating system is simply the one that’s best for your home. And that depends on several different factors.
The Best Type of Heater
There are several types of heating systems available on the marketplace today. These are the most common.
- Boilers, which heat water and send it to various rooms of the home. Heat radiates into the rooms via in-ground piping or endpoints such as radiators and baseboard heaters.
- Furnaces, which heat the air and send that through the vents.
- Heat pumps, which are heating and air conditioning systems in one.
So which of these is best? Well, it depends! If you already have a furnace in the home that you’re replacing, a boiler would likely be a costly and unnecessary upgrade. If you’re installing a heater in a new home, you might choose a boiler due to its advanced heating abilities, but you may choose a furnace if you plan to put in ductwork anyway. And a heat pump might be best for someone living in a warmer climate.
The answer, “it depends,” is one you’ll see come up a lot when trying to pick out the best heater for your home. This is true for heating system brands as well; there is no one system that’s right for everyone. That’s why it’s always best to consult with a technician.
The Best Efficiency Rating
Heat pumps are measured by a different rating system than other heaters, so we’ll start there. The HSPF (heating seasonal performance factor) represents heat pump efficiency, and you’ll want to choose one with an HSPF of 8 or higher for high heating efficiency.
The AFUE (annual fuel utilization efficiency) measures heating efficiency for furnaces and boilers. An AFUE of 90% is quite high, meaning the system converts 90% of the energy it uses into heat (while only 10% is wasted in the flue, for example).
Is a 100% AFUE rating the best choice for your home? It depends. While this is a great rating for a gas-powered system, an electric furnace with a 100% AFUE can still cost quite a bit to run due to the high cost of electricity. That’s why we recommend these only to people in warmer climates.
The Best Size
One thing we will tell you is that there is a “right size” you should be looking for when shopping for a heater: the one that fits your home! There is only 1 size of heating system that is the right fit for your house, and that’s usually not the biggest one. In air conditioning and heating, bigger isn’t always better. An undersized furnace will have trouble heating your home sufficiently, but an oversized one can run too frequently, “short cycling” and wearing down the components.
Call a technician to upgrade your heating in Union, NJ. Contact Max Sr & Paul Schoenwalder Plumbing, Heating and Air Conditioning, A Corp.—established 1912.