Comparing Electric And Hydronic Baseboard Heaters

Posted on: 16 January 2018

Baseboard heaters are a type of heating unit that, as their name would suggest, are installed along the baseboards in a room. Since heat rises, these heaters can provide a fairly powerful amount of heat for smaller areas of your home, and can either by your primary heat source or act as a secondary heating unit to supplement a central furnace or heat pump. However, there are two main types of baseboard heaters: hydronic, which makes use of heated water to heat up the surrounding air, and electric, which uses a standard heating element to do the same. These unique methods of operation give each type of baseboard heater a different set of advantages and drawbacks: understanding how they differ can help you choose the best type of baseboard heating unit for your home. 

Electric Baseboard Heaters

The main advantage associated with electric baseboard heaters is their low cost, both as a unit and to install. This is because they only need to have access to existing wiring in your home, which also makes the installation process fairly straightforward and quick to complete. In addition, since electric baseboard heaters have no moving parts and only rely on heating elements to provide heat to the surrounding area, a mechanical failure is unlikely, providing reliable heat over a long period of time.

However, electric baseboard heaters do suffer from not being able to hold on to heat for an extended period of time, which means that any heat that they do produce will dissipate extremely quickly. This requires you to constantly run the unit in order to maintain a comfortable temperature in your room, which can increase your energy bills.

Hydronic Baseboard Heaters

Hydronic baseboard heaters work by passing hot water through a housing, which then radiates the heat outwards. Since water will hold on to heat for a significant period of time, hydronic baseboard heaters will continue to provide heat to the room that they are installed in long after the heater itself has been turned off, which can help save money on your energy bills. 

However, hydronic baseboard heaters do come with a few downsides: most notably, the installation process is quite extensive, since they have to be connected to your home's plumbing system. In addition, the water within hydronic baseboard heaters takes a while to heat up, which reduces the responsiveness of your unit and means that regulating your comfort levels may come with a lag period. 

To learn more, contact a company like C B Lucas Heating & Air Conditioning


Lowering Your HVAC Expenses

After we purchased our very first home, I realized that I was really struggling with paying for the heating and cooling costs. We were spending much, much more money every month than we thought we were going to, and it was really difficult to figure out what we should do. We thought long and hard about how to minimize our expenses, but we didn't really get anywhere until we talked with an HVAC contractor. He mentioned specific, actionable ways to lower our bill, such as programming our thermostat and using more of our ceiling fans. This blog is all about lowering your bill.

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