Households in the United States use a diverse range of heating options, with 47% relying on natural gas and 36% on electricity.
Whether you live in Florida or Alaska, a home heating system is vital to your comfort. Home heating systems in the United States most often use natural gas or electricity to work.
How does a home heating system work? Knowing the critical components of a home heating system is essential to understanding how they keep us warm and comfortable on the coldest night. Even a warm area like Punta Gorda, Florida can get into the 40s and 50s.
Home Heating System
Home heating systems that are common in the United States have three core components. These three core components are aided by all the secondary parts that make them work. All three must work in concert with one another to warm your home.
We will cover some of these secondary components after we go over the key components.
Heating equipment comes in many varieties. What links them all together is that they require a heat source to function. A home heating system usually relies upon electric coils or a natural gas flame to generate heat.
Other methods are gaining popularity in this regard as well. Heat pumps work by gathering the heat from outside and bringing it in. Even on the coldest day in Florida, you will have plenty of excess heat in the air. This heat is transferred inside by the heat pump while cold air is pushed out.
This is in stark contrast to traditional heating methods, which require the heating element to generate all the heat. Most heat pumps still use a hot coil when they are on a defrost cycle to make sure the air doesn’t cool off inside the house too much.
In most home heating systems, the generation of this heat is done in the furnace. Some homes use secondary sources as well, like space heaters. Like an electric furnace, a space heater uses hot coils to warm the air around them. This heated air is then ready to be distributed throughout your home.
Forced Air or Circulation System
If you have ever heard a heating system explained with the term forced air, this is the crucial component they are speaking about. Forced air is part of an air circulation system that pushes the warm air through your home. Whether you are using furnace or an alternative source of heat like a wood pellet stove, they all require the air to move.
A home heating system usually uses a fan to accomplish this. Once the air is warmed up, the fan pushes the air through ducts in the home. This causes the heat to be evenly distributed around the house, with no room being left out.
As long as you have proper insulation, this system will make sure that your home reaches the temperature that you want it to be. The way you set that temperature makes up the third and final component of a home heating system.
Even systems that don’t use ducts, like heat pumps, require a ventilation system. Heat pumps and radiant solar heat still require a fan to operate in order to move the air where it needs to go.
The thermostat could be considered the brain of a home heating system. You set the temperature you want your home to be at, and the thermostat makes sure that the heater turns on to keep it that way. A good thermostat is efficient because it does not require the heating element to be on all the time.
For a thermostat to work effectively, it must be placed correctly in the house. Traditional thermostats read the temperature of the air around them. If they are not centrally located, the thermostat can get an incorrect reading, and rooms on the periphery may not receive enough warmth.
Modern thermostats are more efficient and less likely to break. They are programmed devices that can even be connected to your smartphone via Wi-Fi. If you have a system like this, you can set the thermostat before leaving and then adjust it before returning home.
A common addition to any home heating system, or HVAC system, in general, are devices to improve indoor air quality. They are not considered key components but are very popular. Having one installed can make the air inside your home cleaner and more specific to your needs.
The Rise of Heat Pumps
For those who do not live in excessively cold environments, like Punta Gorda, Florida, heat pumps are an excellent option. Unlike traditional heaters, they function by pulling warmth out of the air. In the summer, they do this to cool the house, and in winter, they do it to warm the home.
The climate in Florida is extremely well suited to heat pumps. They function a bit differently than other traditional home heating systems in this way. They’re more like a reverse refrigerator than they are a traditional furnace.
Central Heating and Air and Home Heating
For most people, their HVAC system handles both heating and cooling. These units are most often called central heating and air. The rise of this system is due to the convenience it offers to a homeowner. Remember, if you have central heating and air, the key components of your home heating system remain the same.
Heating Solutions for Florida
Don’t risk another uncomfortable winter night. Temperature fluctuations inside your home can even lead to damage and difficulty.
Get the home heating system that will help you live comfortably. Just because you’re in Florida doesn’t mean that you should have to be cold at night and hot during the day.
All of the components we’ve covered can be purchased and installed by Cliffs Air Conditioning and Heating. Don’t try to install any components yourself. Self-service is a tedious and difficult process and is better left to experts.
If you live in Punta Gorda or the surrounding area and need work done on your HVAC system, don’t hesitate to give us a call. Contact us today at Cliffs Air Conditioning and Heating if you live nearby, and we can help get you the home heating system you need.