A hydronic system heats your home using water or steam, which provides some unique advantages. It’s essential to understand these benefits and how they compare to forced air heaters before deciding on installing the system. Here’s more on the pros and cons of forced air vs hydronic systems.


Heat transfer takes place much faster through water than air. Additionally, ductwork in forced air systems is notoriously difficult to seal completely. Even in a well-installed system, air leakage can be at 1 to 2 percent. Therefore, hydronic heating systems are more energy-efficient than forced air systems.

Bear in mind that a heating system’s efficiency also significantly depends on other factors like the age of equipment and proper maintenance. It’s advisable to discuss your heating system’s efficiency with a reputable contractor and schedule annual professional maintenance.


A hydronic heating system distributes heat evenly around your home. A forced air system pushes heated air through your vents. Therefore, you may experience a rush of heated air as well as cold spots around your house, which can downgrade your comfort considerably.


Circulation of forced air can kick up dust and allergens and spread them throughout your home. These can activate allergies and asthma attacks. Broken furnace components can also leak contaminants and carbon monoxide (CO), which can cause CO poisoning. Hydronic heating is safer and healthier than forced air heating.

Upfront Costs

With a forced air heating system, you can use one furnace and a network of air ducts to heat your entire home. On the contrary, with a hydronic system, you’ll have to install a heat exchanger for every room in your house in addition to extra plumbing. As a result, forced air heat has a much lower upfront cost than hydronic heating.

Both hydronic and forced air systems have their distinctive advantages. Remember, whatever the type of system you choose to install, it will only work effectively if you maintain it.

Ensure the company you choose to schedule an annual tuneup with is experienced with your type of heating system. For more help with choosing between forced air vs hydronic systems, contact Mowery Heating, Cooling and Plumbing. We install, repair, and tune up all kinds of heating systems in the Indianapolis area.