With zoned climate control, zero ducting, and a highly efficient heat transfer process, mini-split heat pumps are fast-gaining attention as affordable home heating solutions. Some ductless mini-split heat pumps have efficiency levels as high as 300%. However, this is only half the story.
In places like Kalispell, MT, these systems can’t always source enough outdoor heat to transfer inside. When outside temperatures plummet, their efficiency increasingly declines. The good news is that there are several cost-effective ways to heat your home this winter. Read on to discover the cheapest.
Strategically Tightening Your Home Envelope
Regardless of which heating method you choose, having a reasonably tight home envelope is key to maximizing your energy savings. This involves:
- Sealing up air leaks at windows and doors
- Adding more insulation where needed
- Installing high-quality windows
Strategies that keep more of your warm, conditioned air inside will lower your energy bill and make it easier to maintain a consistently comfortable temperature.
Replacing or Improving Your HVAC Ductwork
Most homes in the region are built with HVAC ducting to support central heating systems. Did you know that your HVAC ductwork has an expected lifespan of just 10 to 15 years? Having old, leaky ductwork can cut your heater’s efficiency by half. Worse still, most of the warm air that your heater produces will be trapped behind drywall, in crawlspace areas, or your attic.
High-Efficiency Boilers and Furnaces
Fuel-burning heaters are assigned annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) ratings. AFUE ratings show how much of a heater’s fuel is converted into heat energy and how much is wasted. High-efficiency furnaces and boilers can have AFUE ratings as high as 98.5%. This means that just 1.5% of their fuel is wasted due to incomplete combustion. Moreover, efficient heaters like these also produce far lower amounts of harmful exhaust gases.
When temperatures in Kalispell dip below 30 degrees Fahrenheit, a high-efficiency boiler and furnace will outperform many ductless mini-split pumps and standard heat pumps. Whether powered by heating oil, natural gas, or electricity, these heaters are less likely to struggle in the local climate to produce enough heat energy. Are you wondering the differences between ductless and mini-splits, contact us for more information.
We’ve been proudly serving residents of Kalispell, MT, and the surrounding area since 1942. We offer heating, cooling, and indoor air quality services. We also provide ductwork and sheet metal fabrication. To find out more or to set up an appointment, contact General Sheet Metal, Inc. today!