There are a couple of things you can do to maximize energy efficiency and comfort levels, which you may not yet have considered.
Although electric heat is widely thought to cost more it should nevertheless be considered when heating individual areas. Many of these units, whether they are a baseboard heater or micro-styled furnace, can often effectively heat, for example, a room that is used infrequently. With separate heating controls they are only used on demand — when needed. This can be more cost effective than turning on a forced air system or boiler that heats an entire home when you just need more heat in a particular room.
Weather stripping, caulking, vapour barriers, plastic windows barriers, insulating tapes and extra insulation are always worth considering too. This coupled with proper attic ventilation can increase the benefits. Programmable thermostats can save you money too by regulating when to heat your house. They afford you the opportunity to turn back the heat when you are not there or during sleep times. Humidifiers can provide moisture to the warm air that will increase the home’s relative humidity and make the home feel warmer which will allow you to turn back the thermostat.
System maintenance is also key to maximizing levels too. If the furnace or filters are dirty the furnace has to work that much harder. This too is the case with an un-maintained blower and blower motor. Cleaning can usually be achieved with a wire brush and vacuum. An improperly adjusted or dirty burner itself can cause the furnace to work improperly. Ductwork on forced air systems should be sealed at their joints. They should be cleaned periodically. Install dampers on the lines so you can better control the heat to certain areas of the home. Although we have talked about forced air systems mostly be sure to properly maintain any system. High efficiency units should be thought of as high performance race cars — they’ll need to be tuned regularly.