Your furnace is literally the powerhouse behind your home’s heating and cooling system, and furnaces aren’t one size fits all. Let’s walk through the different types of furnaces and how to choose the right one for your home.
WHAT IS A FURNACE?
A furnace is one of the main components of your HVAC system. When you set your thermostat, you activate the furnace to begin heating air. A fan switches on and circulates this warm air through your home. How the heat is transferred to the air depends on the type of furnace.
Any furnace comparison should start with an analysis of which type of furnace is most appropriate for your home. This might depend on what fuel source(s) are readily available and your budget.
DIFFERENT TYPES OF FURNACES
There are four main types of furnaces: natural gas, oil, electric, and propane. Electric furnaces can heat the air by exposing heated elements, while other types of furnaces typically require a heat exchanger or chamber that warms the surrounding air. Finally, the thermostat signals the furnace to shut off when the set temperature is reached.
- Natural gas furnaces are highly economical. While older gas furnaces were only about 65% efficient on average, newer gas furnaces can be up to 98% efficient. Natural gas is also the most popular way that Americans heat their homes; nearly half the country currently uses this energy source. However, usage varies widely by region.
- Oil furnaces are most commonly found in the northeastern United States. They are slightly less efficient than gas furnaces, typically between 80-90%, but the upfront cost is lower. Natural gas furnaces can cost up to 25% more to purchase.
- Electric furnaces are the cheapest to purchase and are easier to install and typically last up to 10 years longer. But with the cost of electricity much higher than gas, you’ll pay for the difference with your monthly energy bill.
- Propane is a byproduct of oil and gas production. It’s easily stored in tanks and used by almost 10% of U.S. households. This is a great option if gas and oil aren’t readily accessible in your area.
THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN CHOOSING A FURNACE
When choosing the right furnace for your home, there are a couple of things we recommend you take into consideration.
Choose the right size
It’s essential to have the right size furnace for your home. This is typically measured in BTUs, and calculating the correct size depends on many factors. The size of your home, ceiling height, and even the number of windows all have to be taken into consideration. Not sure where to start? Schedule a free replacement consultation with Spurk HVAC and we’ll happily get you the right-sized unit for your home.
Compare furnace reviews
Don’t just go for the cheapest furnace. A lower-priced unit may end up costing more to operate and repair if it runs less efficiently. Check out customer reviews on any furnace you’re considering before you buy, or just ask us! Believe it or not, we often have insider information, such as firsthand experience with furnace filter pressure drop comparison, which is important because the type of filter you put on your furnace can reduce its efficiency.
Which brand of furnace is the best?
This is a tough question to answer. There are a ton of popular brands out there: Trane, Carrier, Goodman, American Standard, Mitsubishi, and Rheem are all popular in Pittsburgh and across the nation.
Our favorite brands are American Standard and Mitsubishi Electric. We base our favorites on quality and value. Both brands have delivered for our customers in both categories for years.
About Spurk HVAC
Spurk HVAC was formed in 2018 and is located in Warrendale, Pennsylvania. We proudly serve Cranberry Twp., Wexford, Gibsonia, Mars, and the surrounding areas. We are an American Standard Customer Care Dealer and a Mitsubishi Diamond Contractor.
We service all makes and models. Please contact us if you are seeking heating repair, heating system replacement, air conditioner repair, air conditioning maintenance, air conditioning replacement, or any other heating & cooling services. Whether you are looking for residential or commercial HVAC services, we look forward to any and all opportunities to become your preferred HVAC contractor.
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