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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    4

    Default best heating system for new 3200 sf home

    I hope to begin construction in the spring of 2009. I am located just north of Boston MA.

    My question is: What is the best heating system in terms of health, comfort, and efficiency?

    The house is 3200 sf (colonial) high ceilings on the first floor with some cathedral ceilings. I am planning on hardwood throughout with the exception of the baths (3) which will be ceramic tile.

    Thanks
    Mike

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Coventry, RI
    Posts
    340

    Default Re: best heating system for new 3200 sf home

    One of the cleanest and most efficient systems is radiant heat in the floor. It however is not the cheapest. Things to keep in mind are that it does take a bit of time to warm up so it won't heat a room as fast as say baseboard or forced hot air. However the heat is very even and the heat comes up from the floor so the thermostat can be kept fairly low. I keep mine at between 65 and 67 and am comfortable. Also when you get up in the morning to take a shower you aren't stepping on a cold floor. Its not toasty warm as some may think but it is warm enough to be comfortable with bare feet. The other thing to keep in mind is that if you are using hardwoods that are nailed down you either have to be real careful or have a lot of patch kits on hand LOL. I used an engineered floating floor to solve this problem or you could use a glue down floor. Also its important to get a high efficiency boiler. Most likely NG or Propane would be the best choices. Hope this helps you out.

    Mike

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: best heating system for new 3200 sf home

    Thank you for your response Mike. I will look into radiant a little closer I was hopping to get more opinions on other types of systems to compare.

    Mike

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    550

    Default Re: best heating system for new 3200 sf home

    I would agree with sabo in regards to radiant---it's one of the most efficient systems on the market.

    To heat that many sq. ft. in your home, you want a system that keeps the hot water in the radiant tubing at 90-100 degrees, and a condensing gas-fired boiler is ideally suited for this---there is very little wasted heat when using a radiant system.

    Since it is a form of hot water heat (hydronic), there's also a lot of flexibility to this system.

    If you prefer a quicker heat response in some instances or situations---no problem, hot water baseboard that's run off the same system can be run at 180 degrees for a quick spot warm-up, while the sub-floor radiant can be run at 90-100 degrees, using mixing valves.

    Most people feel warm & comfortable at lower temps of 65-67 degrees with radiant---that's because the entire mass of the floor is being heated like a giant radiator to heat everything in the living space.

    The only other variation to this system would be to have a geothermal heat pump that uses hydronic lines buried in the earth.

    Heat pumps are very efficient (up to 300%) because they work not by burning fuel, but by moving heat from a relatively warm area like below ground to a cooler area, like the house to be heated, but the initial cost for an install is $30k to 40k, so it will take quite a number of years to pay off the investment.
    Last edited by NashuaTech; 11-05-2008 at 01:14 PM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: best heating system for new 3200 sf home

    Thank you Nashua. This info will be very helpful in the planing stages.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: best heating system for new 3200 sf home

    How does radiant heat compare to the other types of heating in terms of health?

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