How to be sure home has comfortable and economical heat system
Hi, we are designing a custom home and plan to have a forced air heating system. All of our ceilings except the foyer and great room will be 9' tall. The house will primarily be a one story with 1/2 second level. The great room and foyer will be some kind of higher, possibly cathedral style. The house will be approximately 3400 sq. ft. with 2700 on the main floor.
I want to make sure we do not lose heat with the tall ceilings in the great room/foyer area which will drive up the cost of heating the house. Also, I want to be able to control the comfort level in different rooms, i.e. colder in the bedroom, warmer in the bath, and a comfortable 69 degrees in the other main areas in the house. The house is going to be an open floor plan with kitchen, great room, dining room and foyer without walls to separate.
These newer types of furnaces and vent systems with zones, dampers, thermostats in separate rooms and other types of controls claim to take care of these types of problems. I will be putting electric infloor heat in the master bath. Also, I've been told that a fan in the cathedral ceiling pushes the heat down so you don't lose heat up there. Is this really true?
Before I design my house with cathedral ceilings, I want to be sure I'm not going to be either paying a fortune for heat (which I can't afford to do), or be forced to live in a cold house because I can't afford to heat my house.
I would love to hear from you with information regarding heating systems or your personal experiences on this subject.