LESLIE: Now we’ve got Barb in Iowa on the line who’s got a heating question. How can we help you today?
BARB: Yes. My son recently purchased a house and it has hot-water heat. And was wondering about if we replace that, if you’d suggest staying with that system or going with maybe the forced-air natural gas?
TOM: Oh, no, I would – well, first of all, is it a gas-fired heating system? It’s just heated by hot water instead of ducts?
BARB: Yeah, it has kind of – the radiators along the …
TOM: Oh, listen, Barb, you’ve got the best heating system available. So, you definitely don’t want to take – never take apart a radiant system.
Now, if you want to add air conditioning, you add a separate set of ducts for that. But you never disable that hot-water baseboard system, because it delivers warm, moist heat. Now, most builders today don’t put these in because they’re too expensive. But if you bought a house that’s got one, you definitely want to keep it and enjoy it.
BARB: OK. And then if – just repair it if it would need any …
TOM: Well, I mean hot-water systems rarely need repair; it’s just that the boiler needs maintenance. But most hot-water, gas-fired boilers will last 25 or 30 years.
BARB: OK. Well, thank you.
TOM: You’re welcome, Barb. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.