Include space heaters in your plans for alternative home heating
Electricity, gas or oil are the fuels that most people heat their homes with these days. But there are energy alternatives that, depending on the region and climate in which you live, are gaining popularity with the public.
In some homes, a woodstove strategically placed in a kitchen or family room can heat up a considerable amount of the space where families tend to congregate. With a nod to sustainability, for instance, wood-burning stoves now use pellets made of compressed sawdust, corn or nutshells that burn much cleaner than wood.
The most popular alternative heating source is solar power. Passive solar heating is popular in newly built facilities – and mandated in many states for public buildings – because it’s an important component in certification for green building practices. Passive solar heat occurs when a building or home is engineered to have windows in spaces where the sunlight will be maximized for heating that space.
In active solar heating, homeowners install panels on the roof or other sun-exposed surface to heat water or anti-freeze and pump it through the home, similar to forced hot water with traditional heating fuels. While the cost of adding solar heating to a new or existing structure is a big-ticket item initially, the year-to-year savings often balance the initial investment and reduce the reliance on fossil fuels.
Another alternative is to install radiant floor heating, which is particularly effective in smaller homes. This method pumps heat underneath the flooring, which radiates throughout the room. It can also be installed in walls.
Inexpensive and efficient
For homeowners who aren’t able to install a new heating source, there’s an inexpensive, but efficient alternative – electric space heaters. From infrared quartz models to ceramic heaters, they range significantly in size and power capacity, depending on where they’re to be used. Infrared quartz heaters, for instance, have digital technology, timers, energy efficiency and caster wheels that allow them to move easily from room to room.
There’s a space heater to fit a variety of uses in houses, basement workshops and garages as well as small, personal-size models that are ideal for home offices where homeowners concentrate their activities in one area of a room.
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