First of all, don't listen to TV adds directly. To know what you may save
will be a complex issue. There are many factors such as the actual required
BTU's, how the heat will be distributed, the type of air flow effect, the
heat loss in the home, and other things I can not even think of at this
There is also the ratio of the cost of the amount of energy difference
between the two systems to give you the BTU's you require in the first
place, and the system efficiency. When you sit down and scientifically work
in all the factors, since your home is not a thermo precision environment,
you may find that the results can be different than what you speculated in
the first place.
It would take someone with a lot of experience and knowledge to really work
this out for you. If you call in one of those salesmen from these
companies, all he will see is his commission for selling you a system. He
will then come up with all kinds of charts, figures, and examples to justify
what he is going to sell you.
For an example, you can look at what your neighbours are doing since the
climate of the area is the same, and their house construction must be
similar. You can enquire to them about their heating costs, and type of
heating system that they have. You have to factor in, if they are leaving
the doors, or windows opened more often, and or leaving the garage opened
longer. These things will show a difference on the average. There is even
the factor of how the wind blows on the building, how much sun light they
are receiving, and even the colour of the outside walls and roof in some
cases. Darker colours will tend to heat up more when the sun is shining.
This will contribute to a slight amount of less heat loss, even though the
house is insulated. In the summer, a dark coloured exterior may infact
increase the air conditioning costs.
If you look at the cost difference that you may save, over the lifespan of
the heating system you choose to change to, and the maintenance required,
you may find that there may be very little recovery or non at all, that
makes it worth the time and effort.
If you do not have central air conditioning, you may want to consider a heat
pump. this would cost about the same or a bit more than changing a furnace.
With temperatures that are not colder than about -15 Cells (depending on the
type), the heat pump will act as a heater, and will air condition in the
summer. These are more efficient than most other systems. If you have a
central system that uses forced air, there will be no need for extra duct
work. You may recover some of the cost, but there are other conveniences
with this type of system.
Jerry Greenberg GLG Technologies GLG
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