Keeping Your AC System Cleaner

Advantages and Disadvantages of Hydronic Heating Systems

by Yolanda White

Hydronic heating systems are heating systems that make use of water or another fluid as a medium to transport heat throughout your home, a direct contrast to more conventional forced air heating systems that blow heat through the air of your home using fans. Because of their distinctive method of heating your home, hydronic heating systems carry with them a unique set of advantages and disadvantages. Understanding what they have to offer can help you decide whether or not hydronic heating systems are the right fit for your home's heating needs.

The Advantages of Hydronic Heating Systems

Lack of Allergens: Hydronic heating systems do not use ductwork to heat your home. This means that dust and other allergens do not have the opportunity to build up in the fans and vents of your heater, and cannot be spread throughout your home, which helps reduce your exposure to allergens, a major benefit for those with respiratory diseases.

Quiet: Hydronic heating systems, unlike forced air heating systems, do not make use of fans to move heat throughout your home. This means that there will be no loud noises when your furnace turns on, and you won't have to worry about being woken up in the middle of the night due to a noisy fan.

Efficient: According to, air has a thermal conductivity of 0.024 watts per meter kelvin, while water has a conductivity of 0.58 watts per meter kelvin. This means that water is better able to absorb the heat produced by your central heating system and transport throughout your home, which means that you will lose less heat. This will result in lower energy bills in the long run.

The Disadvantages of Hydronic Heating Systems

Freezing: Hydronic heating systems make use of piping to move hot water to radiators throughout your home. If the temperature drops and the pipes still have water in them, they can freeze and burst, which can require significant and costly repairs. However, this can be easily offset by properly insulating your pipes before the winter season occurs.

Single Purpose: Many forced air central heating systems operate as both furnaces and air conditioning units. Hydronic heating systems, usually in the form of boilers, cannot provide your home with cooling in the summer months, which means that you will have to have an air conditioning system installed in tandem with your hydronic heating system, an additional cost. For more information, talk to a heating contractor like Kingston Home Heating.