The largest home energy expense is heating — about 45 percent of the monthly energy bill. The average household consumes about 11,320 kilowatthours of electricity. With that known fact, shouldn’t you be committed to having the most efficient heating system possible?
First, you should make your home energy efficient so that no matter what energy source you choose, it runs at its peak efficiency. This includes having windows and doors sealed and weather stripped, opening your blinds on sunny days to absorb the sun’s heat and closing them at night to maintain the warmth inside the house. Installing a programmable thermostat can also add to energy efficiency, as can setting your ceiling fans to turn counter clockwise, forcing the warm air downward.
Next, research and learn about the various options in heating. Energy sources include furnaces, boilers, solar heat, electric pumps and heat pumps. These sources can be distributed through a number of different methods, including forced air, radiant heat and baseboard heat. Have your Baltimore local heating professional provide you with information on the best sources and methods in your area. For example, you may learn that natural gas is more prevalent in the Northeast, so it’s a better bet for a heat source.
Refer to websites like energy.gov and buildinggreen.com. Many of these sites have actual calculators that allow you to plug in your personal energy use numbers and they estimate the energy cost and/or savings based on your input.
Finally, evaluate your lifestyle and how you use your heating and cooling system. In the end, only you can decide what system is best for you, your family and your budget.