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Home Heating: Everything You Should Know

Accounting for about 45% of your energy bills, space heating is the largest energy expense in your home. Natural gas is the most common home heating fuel, being used in 57% of American homes. Between 2007 and 2012, the average U.S. household spent over $700 on heating using natural gas and over $1,700 on heating homes using heating oil.

How heating systems work

There are three basic components to all heating systems. If you notice that your heating system isn’t functioning properly, one of these basic components may be the problem.

  • Heat source: Usually a furnace or boiler that provides warm air to heat the home.

  • Heat distribution system: For example, forced air or radiators, which move warm air through the home.

  • Control system: Most commonly a thermostat, which regulates the amount of warm air that is dispersed.

Types of heat source for heating systems

Types of distribution systems for heating systems