A fireplace heat exchanger works by drawing in cool air from the home and heating the air before discharging it into the home as hot air. There are two different ways to upgrade an open fireplace to use heat exchangers.Know More
Fireplaces vary as far as efficiency, but most are in the minus 20 percent to plus 10 to 20 percent. This means most of the heat is going up the chimney, instead of into the home.
The tubular grate type is made up of a series of steel tubes that are curved to go around or behind the fire and then exit out of the top. A blower fan is used to draw in cool air from the bottom and blow hot air out the top into the home. It is important when buying these types that the steel tubes be high-quality and able to handle the high temperature and corrosive effects of a fire. This type of upgrade can be done for less than $1,000. The cost is usually around $400 to $500 for a quality-made product that lasts.
One can also buy inserts which are basically metal boxes that fit into existing fireplaces. The inserts have heat exchange chambers built into them and usually have glass doors so the fireplace does not pull in cool air, which would force the heat up the chimney, according to HowStuffWorks. These types are a lot more expensive and require a steel flume, which could mean having to install a new flume. A person can expect to spend thousands if going with the insert.Learn more about Heating & Cooling
An electric fireplace works by using electric coils and a blower motor to produce heat. The metal coils are located inside of the fireplace, and they begin to heat automatically when the fireplace is plugged into an electrical socket. The blower motor, often referred to as a fan, propels the hot air outward into the room.Full Answer >
A chilled water system works by using refrigeration to cool water in pipes throughout the home. The cold water is used to cool air that blows over them from a fan in each room.Full Answer >
A torpedo heater generates heat from the combustion of fuel, such as kerosene, and then uses a fan to push the heated air out of the unit and into the space it is heating. Torpedo heaters are a simple form of portable heater and only require an electrical outlet and fuel.Full Answer >
Ductless heat pumps, also called mini-splits, are used to pump air into a home without the use of a duct system. They can be used for both heating and cooling.Full Answer >