Finding the right furnace for your area

A lot of homes turn to furnaces as their primary heating equipment. A furnace is a reliable source of heating. It uses ductwork stretched throughout the walls and in the ceiling to access every room in the house. The heat flows through the main duct and then is transferred into the connecting HVAC ducts to reach every room in the house. Having whole home temperature with a furnace system is possibly. While it is not as efficient as a heat pump or as good at even heating as heated flooring, it is fairly inexpensive for such a handy heater. Most homes want the furnace due to it being the standard and the ability to provide good heat. There is not just one type of furnace. A home can have a furnace that is powered by oil, gas or electric. It is up to the homeowner on what type of power source they want to use. Each type of furnace has its own pros and cons. What are you willing to give up to gain? What option works best for your home? No matter what brand and type, the furnace will be reliable for at least 10 years and provide good heat. It really just depends on what you are willing to put into the project.

An oil furnace might be the number one choice of heating. For one, the cost of the oil heater is significantly less than its counterparts. You don’t have to worry about a complicated installation process. The oil heater can be installed virtually anywhere. The downside is that an oil furnace is quite a bit larger than a gas or electric heating system. The reason is that the heater has an on site storage tank, which takes up a lot of space. It needs to be in an accessible area of the home for regular oil deliveries. Some people don’t want to give up the room to have such a large tank in their house. However, this large device is way better at heating. It burns 300 degrees hotter than a gas heating option. Since it is so much hotter, the home is better heated with this method. A gas heater tends to leave cold and hot spots since it is not able to evenly distribute the heat through the ductwork. If you live in a region that drops into the single digits, the oil furnace option might be the best for you. Another reason oil heating might be the best is that it is quite safe. Electric can spark and cause burns around the carpet in the home. A gas heater emits gasses in the combustion process. None of these are issues with the oil heating device. The fuel is not explosive and when heating, the oil only ignites by an advanced system with an oil-burner or furnace. Not only is oil safer, but it is more efficient too. Using oil for heating rates at a 95% efficiency rate. Every dollar you are spending on heating, around 95 cents of it is being used. This is much better than a gas heater that burns and churns the gas before actual heat is coming out. Getting oil might be a problem though. Some people have to mess around with importing it and then it ends up on back order. You don’t want to go without oil, because that means you are without heating. If you get your hands on it though, you do save money heating with oil. Studies have shown that using oil rather than gas is 16% more efficient.

Gas heating might have a bad reputation, but it is a solid heating system on the market. Using gas is probably the least expensive option. Gas is easy to access and is dependable. You don’t have to worry about shipping oil or having power outages. A gas heater might not be the most efficient, but it is the most consistent method of heating. If you live in a very cold climate that has lots of wind, using gas might be smarter. Power lines get hit with wind and snow. The electricity goes out and those with electric heating are screwed. A gas furnace would keep on operating in the coldest of nights. The speed of this type of heater is better too. You get quick heating since it is run by an ignitor. As the burner starts up, maximum amounts of heat are being blown around the home. So the homeowner can turn off the heater for work and turn it on once they are right in the door. They only need to wait a short while before being the right temperature. There is no need to waste time, effort and money pre heating a home that is empty. The installation is mainly what gets people away from a gas heater. The system requires a flue and gas hookups for the installation. Not only is this difficult for the HVAC contractor, but it limits where the heater can go. Just because the space works for the heater, doesn’t mean that is where the homeowner wants it. Typically the heating installation is a more expensive one too due to the aggravation of it. The furnace will cost more in the long haul as well. Not only with installation, repairs and maintenance to catch up with a gas heater. The bright side is that each maintenance appointment will be a small, quick repair the HVAC tech needs to do. But, even with this, the gas furnace only has a lifespan of 10-15 years.

An electric heating option is very efficient. 100% of the electricity you are paying for is being used to heat. Oil and gas may be around 90% efficient, but you are not getting all that you pay for. Electric has no combustion process or gasses floating around. Additionally, electric is the easiest source to use. You don’t have to import oil or buy gas. Just plug it in and you are good to go. The downside is that with electric you face the possibility of losing it. Power outages results in no heating or way to turn on your heater without a generator. The last thing a home needs is no heating in the middle of a storm. If you live in a warm climate and don’t run your heater that often, the electric choice is way better. The storms are milder so you don’t risk losing power and it is more efficient at heating. The upfront installation cost is the cheapest of the furnace options, and the installation is a quick one. However, overtime that cost of electric does go up. So if you live in a region that needs constant heating, you might want to pass on this one.

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