The furnace is probably the single most popular heating system among homeowners today. There are many good reasons for this. Furnaces are effective, distributing heated air throughout homes in a prompt manner. They are easier to install in existing properties than radiant heating systems, and they tend to be more affordable upfront. In order to get the most from any furnace, however, you must ensure that it’s the right furnace for your home. Here are a few tips to help you choose the right furnace in Columbus, OH.
Gas vs. Electric
This is the big question for most homeowners. How will your furnace generate heat? By using electric heating elements, or by combusting natural gas and using that thermal energy to warm air for distribution throughout your home? For many, natural gas is the clear winner. It is an affordable fuel source and it burns clean. It doesn’t have to be delivered or stored on premises, either, as it’s piped directly to the furnace.
But if you don’t have access to a natural gas line or if you just don’t want a combustible fuel in your home, an electric furnace is definitely worth your consideration. In fact, these systems are incredibly efficient. Just remember that the cost of electricity itself may make the electric furnace more expensive to run.
While we’re on the topic of efficiency, you should really learn to read the efficiency ratings of heating systems. The efficiency of a furnace (or boiler, for that matter) is measured with an AFUE rating. This stands for “annual fuel utilization efficiency.” In many cases, electric furnaces will have higher AFUE ratings than gas ones. The reason for this is that no generated heat is lost via flue gases. Again, though, remember that the cost of electricity is quite high when compared to that of natural gas. Mid-efficiency furnaces will have an AFUE of 80-83%, with high-efficiency systems landing between 90-98.5% AFUE.
If you have any questions, contact the professionals here at Quality Air Heating and Air Conditioning.