During these months, as the temperatures begin to drop, but before they get so cold as to require full heating capacity, many homeowners and office building managers will opt to use alternative forms of heat to keep spaces warm. You may be doing this as well. The use of kerosene heaters, electric space heaters, fireplaces, and wood stoves is not uncommon, especially during the shoulder months. They take the chill out of the air, without taxing the utility budget as the general heating system could.
There are, of course, pros and cons to heating homes or offices in this way. For one thing, many of these heating sources can cause fire hazard if not properly managed. This, of course, should be the very first concern. They should be set up in a space that is free of debris, away from curtains, furniture, or shelves filled with items that could fall into them. Pets have been known to knock kerosene heaters over, for instance, causing house fires. In other instances, these heat sources have been placed too close to the bed at night and the blankets have ignited. These are very real concerns.
Of course, another approach, which could be beneficial on many levels, would be to consider how you might make your existing heating system more efficient. If you could run the heat on a lower setting during the shoulder months, knowing that it is not going to consume the same amount of energy as it would when running at full capacity, you could heat the space affordably and safely.
This is why controls and sensors are so important, and why this segment of the HVAC industry is growing so rapidly. With a small investment in the right sensors and controls, homeowners and office building managers can achieve the level of comfort desired without killing the heating budget for the year.