Pros and Cons of Hydronic Heating
By: First Supply
Hydronic radiant heating systems use hot water and a heat exchanger to transfer warmth inside homes and commercial spaces. Some people are surprised to hear that hydronic systems heat surfaces in a structure instead of heating the air. This contrasts with forced air furnace systems that work by blowing heated air into a space to displace cooler air. Hydronic systems in older homes circulate steam to cast-iron radiators. Modern systems deliver hot water to smaller, baseboard heaters. Other modern systems circulate heated water through radiant heating loops installed under the flooring. These systems keep the floor warm while heating the house. Hydronic systems are a great choice for some situations, but not for others.
Advantages of Hydronic Heating
Most people living in the upper Midwest use forced air heat, however, there are some distinct advantages to choosing a hydronic heating system. Here’s a list of benefits provided when using hydronic heat for home heating.
Disadvantages of Hydronic Heating
While hydronic heating systems are ideal for certain situations, there are some disadvantages to keep in mind if you’re considering a hydronic system. Read below for a list of disadvantages that come along with a hydronic heating system.
Best Heat Source
Hot water used by a hydronic system is commonly heated by a boiler fueled by natural gas, propane or fuel oil. Other systems rely on heat pumps, solar thermal heat or on-demand water heaters. The most reliable radiant systems employ high efficiency water heaters, instead of boilers. An advantage of tankless water heaters is that they can heat water instantly, which saves energy due to a reduction in overall runtime. Tankless water heater systems also cost less money and are more efficient than standard water heaters.
A heating and cooling system will play a huge role in the day-to-day comfort of a homeowner. The right system will provide years of energy efficient service, while he wrong system will inevitably lead to dissatisfaction and extra expense. The advantages and disadvantages listed in this article should help anyone looking for a new HVAC system make an informed choice. Count on First Supply for information, tools and supplies.