Tips to Selecting a Furnace for Your Home

Furnace OverviewMost modern homes use central heating systems for their main source of heat in place of the wood burners and fireplaces that were once found in the majority of residential and commercial properties. Furnace technology has evolved over the last few decades, producing many new-age devices designed for maximum energy-efficiency without hindering overall performance output.

To keep costs down and to simplify the installation process, there are numerous central heating AC systems on the market. The convenience and effectiveness of these combination devices has made them commonplace, but even then, it can be difficult to decide which type to buy when upgrading. 

There are a few factors to take into account before investing in a new furnace, so remember to do plenty of research well before you commit to a purchase.

What To Know Before Buying That New Furnace

The first and arguably most important consideration is the type of fuel you wish to use. Natural gas and liquid propane (LP) are the two main types and each has its own pros and cons. Due to its ample supply, its low cost, and the fact that it burns very clean, natural gas is the fuel source used by most modern furnaces.

However, there are still many areas where natural gas lines are unavailable, and in these cases, propane is the next best alternative. Electric and wood-burning furnaces are options as well. Be sure to check into the operational costs for each of these heat sources as it may be in your best interest financially to use an electric model or wood burner. Propane and oil require delivery fees, and the cost of firewood is pricey unless you have access to an inexpensive supply.

When stuck between choices, always go with the furnace that has the highest efficiency. The number to look out for is the Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency rating. The most eco-friendly models boast burn rates in the 90-98 percent range, meaning only a small percentage of the fuel burned is wasted. Instead of pilot lights, these models rely on electronic ignition technology to keep costs down, along with many other energy-saving features.

The size of the furnace is just as, if not more, important than how efficient it is since you never want to buy too small or large. The HVAC contractors at Empire Heating and Air Conditioning can help you choose a furnace with the ideal BTU output to ensure your home is adequately heated and that the heat is evenly distributed throughout the property.

Image Courtesy of: Wikimedia Commons