Radiant heating systems – particularly hydronic systems – often lower utility bills relative to sources of heat, such as forced air. According to Bob Vila, hydronic floor heating systems are up to 30% more efficient than forced-air systems. Water can carry a much greater amount of heat as compared to air , therefore the energy used to pump water is an order of magnitude less than fan energy used in forced air systems.
Perceived warmth is higher in a radiant system as compared to a forced air system.
Greater efficiency for heat pumps can be achieved in hydronic situations because operating heating loads are in the 30 to 40 degree Celsius range. Heat pumps don’t have to work as hard as with air to air.
Hydronic cooling is more efficient than forced air cooling ( air conditioning) since hydronic systems require demand less from the refrigeration cycle since higher temperatures will effectively cool a building, They also only use energy for sensible cooling air based systems must also remove latent heat dehumidifying the air, whether desirable or not, this leads to even greater efficiency gains. *Dehumidifying solutions must be designed in for some Hydronic buildings, although dehumidification is not required at all times.
Efficiency for air to water heat pumps is 30% greater for heating and 40% for cooling.