LESLIE: Janet in Wyoming is having some issues with heating her open-plan house in the cooler season. What can we do for you?
JANET: The heating vents are in the ceiling and we live in a cold climate. So we freeze in the wintertime because all the heat goes up the open staircase. And is there any way that that can be changed without costing too much, so that heating vents can be changed to – put into the floor or maybe a wall or something?
TOM: Well, it’s pretty expensive to change your heating system but what you might want to consider is supplementing it with some electric resistance heaters. Generally I don’t recommend those because they’re very expensive to use but in the coldest parts of the winter, it may be a good, viable option because redesigning your duct system is pretty major work. And the cost of that, compared to the cost of running electric resistance heaters for a month or two when it gets really chilly, it makes a lot more sense just to run the electric heat.
JANET: Yes. We have one of those. I think it’s called the Eden Electric Heater.
TOM: Oh, you have a space heater; that’s an EdenPure. I was suggesting what you might want to do is put in baseboard electric resistance heat.
TOM: Baseboard strip heaters. OK? You could hook those up to an automatic thermostat so they only come on when it gets super cold out but that would supplement the forced air heat and make you a lot more comfortable.
JANET: Is this very expensive to put in? Do you have any idea?
TOM: Well, compared to the cost of rerunning your heating ducts, it’s, I think, the most cost-effective way to go.
Janet, thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT.