Electrician,Meyer Electrical Services Inc.
Written by Walt Meyer

Electric Choices for Your Home’s Winter Heating – Part 2

As discussed in Part 1, most homes use hot water or forced air heating systems because they are less costly. However, using electric heating is more advantageous in certain situations. Part 2 will cover Heat Pumps and Radiant Heating.

2) Heat Pumps

Heat pumps work by extracting heat from exterior air by utilizing electricity and refrigerant. Essentially a heat pump is an air conditioner functioning in reverse.
Homeowners seeking a solution that is less costly and saves energy should consider installing heat pumps. Research by the Department of Energy found that heat pumps can reduce electrical consumption by half in comparison to electric resistance heating.

The two chief heat pump types are 1) compression heat pumps that are powered by electricity and 2) absorption heat pumps that can either be powered by electricity or a combustion fuel like natural gas.

As heat pumps work by transferring heat instead of generating it, they typically have lower operating costs than other methods of home heating.

3) Radiant Heating

This type of electric heating provides radiant heat, and it differs from the traditional radiator, which works through convection. Emitting from an element inside a floor, wall, or overhead panel, heat energy is used to warm a room instead of the traditional method of directly heating air.

Buildings with radiant heating have lower interior temperatures than conventionally heated buildings, while maintaining an equal level of body comfort. In addition, radiant heating systems reduce air circulation within a room, decreasing the spread of airborne particles. In addition, humidity levels are healthier.

The three main types of radiant heating systems:

• Underfloor (electric or hydronic)
• Wall
• Overhead panels

Called low-temperature systems, underfloor and wall heating systems have large heating surfaces, and a significantly lower temperature is needed to attain equivalent heat transfers. Depending on the type of room, the maximum heating surface temperature varies from 84 to 95 °F.

Typically used in manufacturing and warehousing facilities, radiant overhead panels have much higher surface temperatures than underfloor and wall systems.

Electrical Services You Can Trust

Founded in 1991, Meyer Electrical Services provides home and commercial electrical services in Maryland, Virginia, and D.C., where we are licensed and insured. Based in Bethesda, our team proudly serves all of Montgomery County. Receive a free consultation for custom electrical work today by calling (301) 941-1400.