Are Space Heaters Effective & Energy-Efficient?

With winter in full swing, many homeowners are left wondering how they can keep warm without burning away the contents of their wallets. Using space heaters as a way to conserve energy during the winter can be a great way to stay comfortable while cutting on seasonal heating costs. However, it’s important that homeowners understand when it’s appropriate to use these systems and what type of system to get in order to maximize energy efficiency.

When Are Space Heaters Most Efficient for Heating?

Whether or not a space heater will be efficient at heating your indoor space largely depends on the size and number of rooms being heated. In most cases, if you’re only heating one or two rooms in the home, a space heater would be the better option over central heat in terms of energy efficiency. However, policy researchers at the Alliance to Save Energy note that in terms of energy-per-heat output, small space heaters are rarely ever capable of surpassing the efficiency of central heating units.

If you’re wondering whether or not a space heater can help save you money this winter, ask yourself the following:

  • Do I need my whole home heated?
  • Is my home large?
  • Are multiple rooms in my home frequently used at once?
  • Does my home have poor insulation?

If you answered yes to these questions, using a space heater as your sole heating solution may not be the best choice. Instead, it is better to stick with a central heating system, such as a gas furnace or heat pump.

What Type of Space Heater Is Most Energy-Efficient?

Within the world of ductless heating units, there are varying degrees of energy efficiency depending on how the system operates. The two most energy-efficient types of space heaters include radiant and convection heating systems.

Radiant Space Heaters

Best used to heat small rooms or parts of a large room, radiant space heaters emit infrared radiation that heats up whatever (or whoever) is closest to the unit. Modern portable radiators don’t pose the same fire risk that their predecessors did, making them a great option for heating up the smaller areas of your home that need a little extra warmth during the winter.

Convection Space Heaters

If you’re looking for an energy-efficient way to heat your whole home with a space heater, a convection system is the right choice to make. These heaters warm rooms more evenly as air rises and falls within the space.

Be sure that while you shop for a space heater, you are analyzing the unit’s energy usage. Models meant to heat larger areas use more energy than those that are designed to heat smaller spaces. If the room you need to heat is on the small side, you may be able to pull off shopping for a less powerful system to save both on initial and ongoing costs.

Should I Choose a Space Heater or Central Heat?

The decision to choose a space heater or central heat often isn’t one or the other. In many cases, families need to supplement their central heating equipment with a space heater to compensate for air drafts, leaky air ducts, and other home comfort deficiencies. If you have any questions about heating your home, trust the team at Blind & Sons to provide the expert HVAC guidance you need. Our heating installation and replacement professionals are here to help address all of your energy-efficiency concerns. Call our team at (330) 753-7711 to schedule heating services in Northeast Ohio!

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