The cold climate in Canada means that heating system accounts for over 60% of the energy used in a typical Canadian household. Choosing the best heating system for your home necessitates that this new heating system has to be able to reduce your household energy expense and at the same time giving you and your family comfort during the cold Canadian days.
According to Natural Resources Canada, heating accounts for 63% of the energy used in the average Canadian home, followed by water heating (19%), appliances (12%), lighting (4%) and space cooling (1%).
Here are the pros and cons of the different types of heating systems:
Furnace – a type of heating system that heats air and uses a blower motor and air ducts to distribute warm air throughout the house – is powered by natural gas, propane, heating oil or electricity.
Furnace’s advantage is that it’s inexpensive. Its con is that some blower fans can be loud, especially in older models.
Boiler – a type of heating system that heats water to generate steam or hot water for heating that’s then distributed via a series of pipes – is powered by natural gas, propane, heating oil, biodiesel blends or electricity.
Boiler’s advantage is that it’s easy to heat only the rooms that are being used. Its con is that it’s expensive to install and needs a minimum temperature to prevent the pipes from freezing.
Heat Pump – a type of heating system that gets heat from the surrounding air for heating – is powered by electricity or geothermal energy.
Heat Pump’s advantage is that it can both provide cooling and heating. Its con is that some types can be expensive to install.
Active Solar Heating
Active Solar Heating – a type of heating system that makes use of the sun to heat air or liquid in a solar collector to immediately warm the house or store it for future use – is powered by solar energy.
Active Solar Heating’s advantage is that it can reduce fuel bills. Its con is that it requires a second heating source, which in effect makes the initial purchase more costly.
Electric Heating – a type of heating system that makes use of electricity and converts it into heat – is powered by electricity.
Electric Heating’s relative advantage is that it’s inexpensive. Its con, however, is that it’s more expensive compared to a heating system that uses combustion.
Falling under this type of heating system are wood or pellet stoves and fireplaces. As the name suggests, this type of heating equipment is powered by wood.
Wood-Burning Appliance is good for ambiance. There’s, however, a danger of carbon monoxide poisoning. As such, carbon monoxide detector is necessary.
Fuel Source of the Heating System
As mentioned, different types of heating systems use different sources of fuel. The availability of natural gas, electricity, wood, propane, heating oil, biodiesel blends, geothermal energy and energy solar energy in your locality has to be factored in deciding what heating system to choose. Aside from the availability of any of these fuel sources, the cost of these fuel sources needs to be considered as well in choosing a particular type of home heating.
Another factor to be considered in choosing the best heating system for your home is to look for an ENERGY STAR certified heating equipment.
ENERGY STAR in Canada is a voluntary partnership between the industry that promotes energy efficiency and the Government of Canada. In Canada, the ENERGY STAR name and symbol are promoted and administered by the Natural Resources Canada.
“ENERGY STAR is helping Canadians save money on energy bills, increasing the competitiveness of our commercial, industrial, and institutional sectors, and helping us fight climate change,” Natural Resources Canada said. “Simply by looking for the ENERGY STAR symbol, Canadians can easily identify energy efficient products, new homes, and industrial facilities.”
According to the Natural Resources Canada, ENERGY STAR certified products meet the strict technical specifications for energy performance. The department said ENERGY STAR certified products save energy, save you money and reduce the impact on the environment without compromising performance in any way. A typical ENERGY STAR certified product is in the top 15 to 30 percent of its class for energy performance.
Another important aspect to be considered when buying a heating appliance is to see to it that the heating system can be integrated to a thermostat – a device that automatically controls the temperature of a heating system at a constant level or within a specified range. According to Energy.gov, installing a thermostat can save an estimated 10% a year on heating.
When choosing the best heating appliance, consider the Lennox gas furnace, specifically model EL296E. When this model is paired with a Lennox electric heat pump, you’ll create a dual-fuel heating system. The heat pump will warm your home on milder days and on colder days, the gas furnace will warm your home. Switching back and forth between gas and electricity when necessary is a cost-effective way to warm your home.
Lennox furnace model EL296E is an ENERGY STAR certified heating equipment, saving you energy, saving you money and reducing the impact on the environment without compromising performance in any way.
In addition to its ENERGY STAR rating, Lennox furnace model EL296E has an AFUE of 96%. AFUE, short for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency, is a measure of a furnace’s performance and efficiency. It’s similar to the miles-per-gallon rating on your car. The lower your fuel cost, the higher the AFUE rating. This model’s 96% AFUE essentially means it can convert 96% of its fuel into heat. This energy efficiency can save you hundreds of dollars on energy every year.
Lennox furnace’s energy efficiency isn’t limited to colder months. When paired with Lennox air conditioner, you can increase your overall energy efficiency for your heating and cooling system, referred to as SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio).
You can also save money by integrating your Nest Thermostat with your Lennox furnace.
During hot summer months and on the most humid days, your smart home isn’t complete without a dependable air conditioner.
Before renting or buying an air conditioner, check first if it offers the following important features:
1. Consistent Temperature
An ideal air conditioner is one that can maintain a consistent temperature inside your home. If you set a certain temperature, this temperature should be achieved and maintained throughout the operation of the equipment.
The temperature outside your home is bound to change from time to time. The temperature inside your home, however, doesn’t have to fluctuate by the shifting conditions outdoors. Your air conditioner should be able to provide consistent temperature just like cruise control in an autonomous car which provides consistent speed set by the driver, regardless of the road and weather conditions outside the vehicle.
2. Virtually Silent
The other requisite for an ideal air conditioner is its silence. What good does it do if an air conditioner is ultra-consistent in its temperature, and yet, it’s too noisy when turned on?
Some of us want some noise in our life like the sound of our favorite band, the laughter of our kids. No one, though, wants to listen to the noisy humming of an air conditioner.
When buying an air conditioner, find out if the unit is solar-ready. A solar-ready unit can harness the power of the sun. The sun is typically up during summer months and humid days. While the sun brings the temperature up, the heat it radiates can be harnessed as energy to power home equipment – and why not, the very equipment that cools our home.
4. High SEER
When buying an air conditioner, look for a model with high Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER). SEER is a measure of efficiency and performance of an air conditioner. SEER particularly specifies the amount of energy required to provide a specific cooling output.
“Central air conditioners are rated according to their seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER),” the U.S. Department of Energy said. “SEER indicates the relative amount of energy needed to provide a specific cooling output. Many older systems have SEER ratings of 6 or less.”
When buying an air conditioner, look for a model that allows connectivity with your other smart home devices. In today’s interconnected world, your home equipment need not be set apart from the rest of your home devices.
Lennox Air Conditioner
The Lennox air conditioner offers consistent temperature, virtual silence and connectivity. It harnesses the power of the sun and has a high SEER.
1. Precise Comfort® Technology
The Precise Comfort® technology of Lennox air conditioner maintains a consistent temperature inside your home. This technology achieves this level of consistency by making small and continuous adjustments to its temperature output throughout the day.
In this sense, Precise Comfort® technology of Lennox operates similarly to the cruise control of an autonomous vehicle. Cruise control makes tiny and ongoing adjustments relative to the outside conditions of the car – road and weather conditions – at the same time providing overall efficiency.
Regardless of the weather conditions outside, Precise Comfort® technology of Lennox maintains the temperature level that you choose by conducting minute by minute adjustments to the airflow and cooling. Because of this technology, your indoor temperature stays consistently within 0.5 degrees of your chosen temperature, without any cold and hot swings.
2. SilentComfort™ Technology
Even though there are no financial savings for having a virtually silent air conditioner, having one directly affect your comfort. Most air conditioning systems today are quieter compared to those produced in past years. Lennox takes this development to the next level with its SilentComfort™ technology.
Compared to a standard conditioner, the Lennox air conditioner is 50% quieter. It also comes with an industry-exclusive composite fan design with insulated compressor compartment and variable-speed operation to help reduce sound levels.
3. SunSource® Home Energy System
The Lennox air conditioner – in particular, the Dave Lennox Signature® Collection – is solar-ready. This means that this particular air conditioning unit is designed to work with solar modules in Lennox’ SunSource® Home Energy System. You can use a few solar modules at first and add more (up to 16 modules total) when your budget permits.
The SunSource® Home Energy System of Lennox harnesses solar power – utilizes solar power first prior to using electricity from your utility company – to run your air conditioner.
SunSource® Works this way:
Solar modules harness energy from the sun and send it to your Lennox solar-ready air conditioner.
The harnessed energy is first used to cool your home.
The energy that’s left is utilized to run small electronics and appliances in your home.
The energy left can potentially be sold back to your utility company and earn you a credit.
Benefits of the SunSource® Home Energy System of Lennox include:
It cuts your cooling bills by up to half.
It makes you eligible for possible tax credits and rebates.
It can be installed with no major modification requirements to your home.
This solar system can be expanded by adding more solar modules whenever you want.
Harnessing power from the sun is environment-friendly. This reduces the need for electricity generated by power plants, which in turn results in the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.
4. High SEER
The Lennox air conditioner has an industry-high SEER rating of up to 26.00, saving you hundreds of dollars every year on your utility bills. The higher the SEER, the greater your energy savings. The typical SEER ratings of other air conditioners range from 13 to 18.
According to Natural Resources Canada, space cooling comprised 1.2% of the Canadian household energy consumption, 4.3% lighting, 14.4% other home appliances, 17.3% water heating and space heating 62.8%.
5. Connectivity to Nest Thermostat
Your Lennox air conditioner can be connected to your Nest thermostat. When paired with Nest thermostat, your air conditioner will familiarize your routine and adjust the temperature accordingly. Connect with us today to how to save money while installing a new AC.