Different Heating Systems in Sweden

The current international situation with rising electrical prices has led to heating being the most important factor to consider when renting a property. Do not be fooled by the wonderful bright summers, since Sweden is best known for its Northern climates and cold winters. In this article, we have ranked the different heating systems used in Sweden so that you can make an educated decision when choosing a property.

The most common heating systems for houses are various heat pumps (such as geothermal), boiler systems, and electric. Some houses use a hybrid of different systems. The most common apartment heating is district heating.

Since the cost of electricity is recently unpredictable (about 1-8 kr/kWh) the following only details the estimated annual kWh savings based a house with an annual usage of 20,000 kWh.

Common villa heating systems including electricity for daily activities, ranked from largest to smallest savings:

  1. Wood and Pellets Boilers (ved och pelletspanna)

This can be a cheap option if you have access to firewood, however, it requires manual labor. This type of heating is fairly rare.

  1. Geothermal Heat Pump (bergvärme)

You can save up to 80% of electricity usage and lower your usage up to 11,000 kWh per year.

  1. Air to Water Heat Pump (luft-vattenvärmepump)

You can save up to 70% of electricity usage and lower your usage up to 9,625 kWh.

  1. Exhaust Air Heat Pumps EAHP (frånluftvärmepump)

You can save 8-9,000 kWh per year.

  1. Air Source Heat Pump ASHP (luftvärmepump)

You can save 8-9,000 kWh per year.

New technology that saves the most but is hard to find deeper cost data on is:

  • Solar panels absorb the energy from sunlight creating electrical charges which is then converted to electricity. As an owner, this is an expensive investment that takes a long time to become cost effective. As a renter, solar energy is a great way to lower electricity costs whilst being climate conscious. Solar panels have really taken off in the past few years so you may find these more frequently.
  • Floor heating is composed by warm air, warm water or electric coils. Since the floor takes up a large portion of the house area, this is an efficient way to heat houses.


Common apartment heating systems:

District Heating (fjärrvärme)

Offered in town from a centralized location. This is a cheap and is not largely affected by varying electricity prices since the heat is created by burning waste products that would otherwise be unused.

 Electric heating (direktverkande el), electric (elpanna) and oil boilers (oljepanna). As the name reflects, electric heating/boilers are directly converted from electricity and are therefore quite expensive, calculated to 20,000 kWh per year. Since oil prices have increased it is now also extremely expensive to run an oil pump.

 To conclude, this is all relative to the size and state of the property. If the insulation in your property is poor, then the usage will be higher. Tips are to check if there is a draft around windows or doors and if the windows have several layers of glass. It can be a good idea to ask the owners for the previous year’s electricity usage to get an estimate. Similarly, the insulation in the walls affects the amount of energy that needs to be produced to heat. Many property owners have signed contracts for a fixed price for electricity, this is a good topic to discuss prior to move-in. It may be advantageous for you to take over a subscription as the electrical companies currently are not offering fixed prices. Finally, for those cold winter days, we recommend lighting a fire in the open fireplace for extra heat and coziness but make sure that the fireplaces are up to code. The lovely, tiled fireplaces, especially in older apartments in the city, can be strictly decorative.