There are many different options on the market for climate control or HVAC systems in Northern California such as air conditioners, furnaces, heat pumps and ductless mini-split systems—an option which has gained popularity in recent years.
Heat pumps can provide the best of both worlds as they can give you energy-efficient heat in the winter and reverse heat, also known as air conditioning, in the summer. However, a common type of heat pump, called an air-source heat pump, may not provide quite enough heat to knock out the chill on really cold Northern California winters so you might need a furnace backup anyway. A more expensive option would be a geothermal heat pump as they are more efficient option that can put out more heat.
The nights in Northern California can get quite chilly, so having a furnace will keep everything nice and toasty. Furnaces are generally located in garages and attics, and direct warmed air that blows through ducts located in your ceilings, in the crawlspace or in the attic. There are two different main types of furnaces: electric or natural gas, each with pros and cons.
Natural gas furnaces offer a highly cost-efficient home heating system, because although they are not quite as energy efficient as some other heating methods, it is cheaper.
Electric furnaces do not get quite as warm as gas furnaces or some other systems, and they also can be more expensive to use. Electric furnace owners might want to consider moving to a heat pump.
Ductless Mini-Split Systems
Another efficient heating & air conditioning system for the South Bay area is the mini-split system. These systems have been used in Europe for years and are just now gaining popularity in the United States. These systems work as a heating and air conditioning combo, with an indoor and an outdoor unit, but the system does not require ductwork. This is a perfect option for places where running ducts would be impossible.
Qualify for a Rebate
There are several ways to get tax incentives for upgrades and enhancements to your home’s HVAC system from state and national governments. Even if you are a condominium owner and replace a portion of your HVAC system, you may be eligible for a deal come tax time. Based on the level of energy savings from your choice of system, you could receive significant tax savings on the cost of the system of your choice. You may also qualify for special financing to help upgrade your home's heating system.
Choosing the right heating system is dependent on several different factors such as the size of your home, your preferred heating levels and your budget. Determining which factors are most important to you from cost, energy-efficiency, or environmentally friendly low-impact heating systems will guide you in a direction for your heating system purchase that you will be happy with for years to come.