What Are Forced Air Units?
Forced air heating is a form of central heating system which circulates heated air through a property via a network of ducts and vents. The system is controlled by a single thermostat.
A variety of power sources can be used to heat the air, such as an electric furnace, gas furnace, a heat pump or hydronic coil.
What Are Their Benefits?
- They can deliver heat quickly – heat is delivered through your home as soon as you switch on your thermostat. Other systems take longer, especially radiant heating systems which require water to be heated up.
- They are efficient – as a means of delivering heat through your home the forced air system is a low cost method of doing so.
- They are reliable – an air forced heating system can last for many years with few difficulties. Regular maintenance is necessary to ensure it retains
- They are cost effective – upfront costs are relatively high, but as they are so energy efficient, compared to other systems, they can make up the upfront costs relatively quickly
- They can be incorporated into air conditioning systems – if your forced air heating system is powered by a heat pump it can act as the power source for both the air conditioning and central heating system.
- You can combine an air filter and a dehumidifier with your forced air heating system.
If you already have ductwork in place in your home, it is worth considering the benefits of installing forced air heating as it can be cost effective
Things to Consider
- Maintenance will be needed to ensure heat loss doesn’t affect the efficiency of your central heating system. For example efficiency can be affected by:
- Leakage from air ducts
- Whether the air ducts are insulated
- If the size of the system is sufficient to heat a home your size
- The age of the system
- If your home is insulated
- If you have old duct work and are considering replacing it – you should have it tested for asbestos.
- Forced air units may differ in a variety of ways: noise levels, energy efficiency, temperature levels etc. You get what you pay for.
- The size of your home will affect the system you will need. Larger homes will need a more complex system to ensure the temperature is the same throughout your home.