Boiler heating may be a good choice for your new home or home renovation. Furnaces are much more common than boilers in our area, mainly due to their lower initial installation costs, but boilers have some advantages you might want to consider. This short boiler heating guide will answer some basic questions:
How Do Boilers Work?
Boilers burn fuel, usually natural gas in our area, to heat water which is pumped from a storage tank to heat exchangers inside the home. Baseboard radiators were commonly used in the past, but in modern construction, radiant loops buried in the concrete slab are popular. Boiler heating is easy to zone using valves and programmable thermostats that isolate and control the temperature in several different areas of a house to provide maximum comfort and efficiency.
The Furnace/Boiler Difference
Boiler systems cost more up front than furnaces, but hot water, or hydronic, heating has some advantages over forced air systems:
- Boiler heating is more energy efficient if you take into account the energy losses in forced air ductwork due to leaks and improper insulation
- Boilers operate more quietly than furnaces. Residents may not even notice when the boiler circulating pump turns off and on.
- Boilers provide radiant heat that's more comfortable and heats more evenly than the convective heat provided by a furnace. Radiant floor loops also warm floors, whereas hot air blowing out of ducts doesn't reach the floor.
- Boilers requires less maintenance than furnaces. There are no filters to change and the hot water piping lasts longer than ductwork before needing repairs.
How Long Do Oil Boilers Last?
Most boilers in our area burn natural gas, but regardless of the type of fuel burned, a boiler can last 15 years or longer with proper routine maintenance. The associated piping in a hydronic system can last many years longer than that. Call us at Thermacon Service Company for help choosing the right type of heating and cooling systems for your home. We work with homeowners throughout the Port Arthur area.