Builders, contractors, and homeowners today face a myriad of options for home heating systems. Furnaces, heat pumps - both air-source and ground-source, and even hybrid furnace-heat pump combination systems are all options. Sorting out the best choices requires taking a close look at system costs, efficiency levels, energy prices, comfort impacts, the severity of the climate, and any applicable incentives.

This course summarizes the key findings from an extensive technical analysis of the energy, economic, and environmental results of using various heating systems in different locations throughout the U.S., and updates the prior study from 2013 with more current energy pricing, system specs, and modeling data.

Learning Objectives

  • Understand how a variety of residential heating systems compare in terms of first costs, operating costs, carbon emissions, paybacks, and comfort.
  • Compare higher efficiency HVAC equipment to standard equipment in terms of payback periods and user benefits.
  • Describe how carbon emissions differ from various heating systems which are fueled by different sources of energy.
  • Describe where certain types of HVAC systems may be most appropriate to specify based on multiple factors, such as efficiency, cost and comfort levels.