Home heating systems are classified based on the fuel and/or the method by which the heat is transferred and distributed into the house:
- Furnaces, boilers, or electric resistance heat powered by conventional fuels supply most of the heating in homes and commercial buildings today.
- Heat pumps are used to a lesser (but increasing) extent to provide space heating.
Most newer homes are heated using central heating systems. Those without central heating systems utilize electric baseboard heaters or, in some cases, in-the-wall or in-floor gas heaters or radiant heat.
Instructions: Move your cursor over the numbers below to see the characteristics of a central heating system:
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Central Heating Systems
Characteristics of a central heating system include:
- A primary heating appliance such as a furnace or boiler located in an out-of-the-way spot such as a basement or garage.
- Heat delivered throughout the house, by either warm air pumped through a system of air ducts or hot water or steam sent through pipes to room radiators or convectors.
- In both forced-air and gravity systems, one or more thermostats automatically (or manually) turn the heating (or cooling) plant off and on, as room temperatures rise and fall.