Energy in the form of electricity and natural gas are the main sources of heat in most American homes. More than 40 percent of the energy consumed by homes in the United States is used specifically for heating the interior space as well as heating water. By comparison, less than 10 percent of energy is used for air conditioning homes during warm weather.
More facts about home heating:
- The percentage of a home's energy that is used for heating has decreased over the years. In 1978, 66 percent was for heating. The change is often attributed to more energy-efficient heating and cooling equipment, as well as improvements in home insulation. Another factor is that more electronic appliances are in use today, which has helped shift the nature of energy usage.
- Overhead fans can help distribute heat and reduce overall heating costs. A well-placed overhead fan rotating slowly will help drive warmer air into the lower parts of the room. The result is a space that is more comfortable and does not require as much continual heating.
- Hybrid heating systems are becoming more cost efficient as the expense of owning and operating solar panels and batteries decreases. With a hybrid system, the solar batteries charge during the day and can be used to operate the heating system during the evening. The solar addition also serves as a backup when the main power source is unavailable.