We don’t currently have a way of heating our home, and it’s mid-October. We had originally planned on being so far along with our renovations that we could install a new system sometime around now. Our plans took a dramatic change and a major delay, which has approximately one billion and four advantages, and one major disadvantage: how do we prevent our pipes from bursting?
Option 1: try and turn on the furnace we have in the basement.
Why? Because it costs no money and probably works. In fact, Home Depot said that for only $30 they’ll have someone come over and do an inspection of it (meaning we’ll pay someone to come over and give us a sales pitch, which they will also do for free).
Why not? It’s so old it was around to see the Baltimore Colts. If it were merely old enough to remember the last Bush administration it would be past its service lifetime, so we’re loathe to rely on something that should have been replaced before The Lion King was released.
Option 2: fix our space heater.
Why? It’s here and if we can get it to work, we know it’ll be sufficient.
Why not? We’ve already put too many man-hours into figuring this thing out that it’s more likely to just burn a bunch of our time and end up making the eventual option just take longer and cost more. Also, pellet stoves are worse for the environment than every other option on this list combined.
Option 3: get a new gas furnace.
Why? We have vents and gas lines already, so this will be the quickest and most reliable option available to us.
Why not? Anything we install in the basement we will have to uninstall in the spring once we start renovations. We don’t even want any gas appliances, anyway. We want a house run entirely off of solar electric power. Anything we buy now we’ll be working to get rid of as soon as we can. It’s the highest cost option and it’s what we know we don’t want.
Option 4: get a new electric furnace.
Why? Well, we know what we want, so we might as well forget about a temporary fix for this one single winter.
Why not? Our home already has more electrical appliances than the wiring can handle. We’ll need extensive electrical work done first. Work that we’d hate to have to re-do in the spring. Also we’ll be uninstalling it in the spring and then re-installing it, I guess.
As we consider our options, we want to hear from you! Have you been in this pickle before? Do you live in an old house? How would you approach this situation? If you are reading this, more than likely you know us and we would appreciate your opinion!