Fans For Cooling VS AC Space Heaters VS Centralized Heating

For many homeowners, the choice between cooling fans, AC space heaters, and centralized heating can be confusing. Now that there’s a lot of emphasis on energy conservation and lowering energy costs, it makes sense that you would want to know the difference between all three. This is important because equipment can be underutilized or overutilized depending on the cooling or heating equipment and the size of the house, apartments or rooms.

In this article, we will be examining all three and give you the information to help you make the right choice.

Hot day
Hot day

Cooling Fans

There are two types of fans: the attic fans and whole house fans. Attic fans are intended to keep the attic cool and increase ventilation during the hot summer months.

The problem is that most attics aren’t built for ventilation in the first place. Installing an attic fan can not only result in the depressurization of the home, it forces cooler air from the air conditioning unit into the attic while pulling outside air into the house. As a result, a well-ventilated attic is better than having an attic fan installed.

Whole house fans help your AC to keep the temperature of your home below 75 degrees. They are often very quiet and require little energy compared to air conditioning units. They can also help circulate the cool air from the AC more rapidly around the house. Using a whole house fan can also lead to a decrease in allergens and increased indoor air quality.

AC Space Heaters

Unlike cooling fans, space heaters are meant for heating up the room or a certain area of a room. There are two types of space heaters: radiant heaters and convection heaters. If you’re looking to heat up a small part of a room or something closest to the unit, a radiant heating system that uses infrared radiation will do just fine.

But, if you’re looking to heat up the entire room, you might want to use a convection heater. They are energy efficient and may be better than centralized heating when you’re not looking to heat up the entire house or have a smaller apartment.

They are also cheaper than centralized heating units. That said, space heaters have been linked to about 25,000 house fires every year so inspect your living space carefully before installing them.

Centralized Heating

Unlike space heating, centralized heating heats up the whole house, including the unoccupied rooms. They could sometimes be used in place of space heaters as with geothermal heaters. That said, centralized heating can result in significant heat loss if the home isn’t well insulated and can drive up your energy costs.

Use centralized heating only when you know that there are no leakages and that the space you’re heating is large enough to require it. Installing a centralized heating system in a small two bedroom apartment, for example, is excessive and inefficient — space heaters would work better.

Knowing a little bit about your options, you can make a more informed decision as to which solution is best for your space. If you have any questions, talk to local HVAC professionals like the folks at and they’ll be happy to help.

Oscar King is a freelance writer and family man who offers articles and insights of interest to homeowners and families.