There are several choices available for heating your home. The most common used heating sources is the furnace and boiler systems. Furnaces heat air and travel through ducts which is distributed into the home. While boilers heat water and is distributed to pipes and then to the radiators. High-efficiency heating systems are also available. There are several systems of furnaces and boilers; forced-air systems, hot-water systems, and steam systems. It depends on existing fixtures to which type of furnace or boiler system is used.
Fireplaces and wood burning stoves, masonry heaters, and pellet fuel appliances are great for burning wood, fire logs, and pellets. A plus would be, you can burn renewable resources to fuel the heat.
Radiant heating systems supply heat straight to the floors, ceiling or walls for an instant radiation of heat. There are three types of radiant heating in floors; air-heated, electric, and hydronic. The panels are heated by electricity or tubes that carry hot water through the walls or ceilings. Usually electric is used due to the concern of water damage if the tubes of water ever leaked. This type of heating system can get expensive as with any electric heating system.
Electric resistance heating is one of the more expensive heating systems. This type of heating converts most of the energy from the electricity into heat. Some types of electric resistance heaters include; electric furnaces, electric baseboard heaters, electric wall heaters, and electric thermal storage (this type of heater works real well with Solar heating).
Active solar heating uses the sun, which heats either liquid or air to heat the home. These two types of active solar heating are called Solar Air Heating and Solar Liquid Heating. Active Solar Heating (or cooling) is worth the money if you use it most of the year.