In many regions, if you say you are getting a new heater, it is just assumed that you mean you're getting a furnace. Furnaces, indeed, have become the predominant home heating apparatus in a lot of regions. But if you live in a relatively mild climate and only need to heat your home a few times a year, you probably don't need a big, expensive furnace. Here are some other heating options that might better serve your needs.
An Air Source Heat Pump
An air source heat pump is a lot like an air conditioner. It pulls heat from one side of a wall and pushes that heat to the other side of the wall. In the winter, it will basically gather heat from the outdoor air and push that heat into your home.
Air source heat pumps are generally all-electric, which makes them an eco-friendly option. They can work in all but the coldest of climates. If you'd describe your winters as "cool" but not "freezing," there is a good chance an air source heat pump will work well for you.
Another awesome thing about these heat pumps is that they are reversible. In the summer, you can just flip a switch, and the heat pump will start cooling the inside of your home instead of heating it. This saves you money; you only have to buy one HVAC unit and not two.
Electric Baseboard Heaters
Electric baseboard heaters used to be really popular before furnaces became so much more efficient and affordable. These heaters cost a lot to operate in really cold climates. But if you live in a mild climate and only use your heat occasionally, the cost of operation won't be too high. The low initial cost of electric baseboard heaters will make up for the higher energy costs. Plus, these units don't take much to install, which helps keep costs even lower.
Electric baseboard heaters make it easy to heat one room without heating them all. You don't even need to put a heater in every room if you don't need it. Most modern versions are equipped with safety features to ensure they turn off if there is anything amiss with the wiring, which prevents the fires that were unfortunately common with older models.
If you live in a mild climate, you may not need a furnace for heat. Consider an air source heat pump or an electric baseboard heater instead.
For more information, contact a local company like Environmental Air Systems Inc.