What are the Different Types of Furnaces?

Good Deals Heating and Cooling furnaces

If you’re wondering how your heating units are providing heat around your house – meet the furnace. A furnace is where the heat is produced and is then circulated in your home via ducts, fans, and blowers that make up the entire HVAC system.

There are many types of furnaces, and they are classified depending on the kind of energy source used. The sort of energy source determines the type of heat transfer. Before you choose a new furnace for your home, make sure that you analyze which type of furnace is appropriate for your home. Though there are many factors to consider, such as efficiency or functionality, it all boils down to your budget and convenience.

Types of Furnaces

Gas Furnaces: As the name suggests — it uses natural gas as its primary energy source. It works by igniting the gas source, which in turn, ignites the burners, producing heat. The generated heat is then transferred to the air and circulated by ducts, fans, and blowers via the heat exchanger. Its efficiency is rated at 98% using the AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency) ratio — the ratio of heat produced for every dollar of energy consumed. Gas furnaces are highly economical; however, only modern models can achieve such a high rating. This type of furnace has become the most popular type used in the USA.

Oil Furnaces: This type of furnace is commonly used at places with frigid climates because oil performs more efficiently in freezing temperatures as compared to natural gas. Considering everything ideal, the AFUE ratio of oil furnaces ranges from 80 – 90%. An oil furnace also has a lower upfront cost — usually 25% less than natural gas.

Electric Furnaces: This type of furnace is an excellent alternative if you don’t have access to a natural gas line. Electric furnaces are usually inexpensive to purchase upfront, which is generally 50% less than gas furnaces and is more compact as compared to the other two types, making it easy to install. They typically last up to 10 years. Despite being the cheapest and having an extended lifespan, the higher cost of electricity will incur additional expenses in the long run.

Propane Furnaces: Another great alternative if natural gas and oil are not readily available. Propane tanks fuel this type of furnace. Its downside, however, is that it’s less efficient.

Factors to Consider Before Buying a New Furnace

BTU Number of the Furnace: BTU number refers to the heat output of the furnace. The higher the number, the more heat it can produce. Larger homes need a considerable amount of heat to achieve a thermostat setting hence, requiring a furnace with high BTU numbers. The size of your home, climate, and overall volume of your home must be taken into consideration.

Climate and Region: Your location and climate determine what type of furnace is ideal for your home. A general rule of thumb is: if you’re living in a mild, temperate climate — the natural gas furnace is more efficient. An oil furnace is ideal for cold climates and, if you’re in a place with relatively lower electricity rates, an electric furnace is perfect.

Keep in mind that operation costs vary over time, depending on fuel and utility costs, usage, and situations experienced by each home. There also may be rebates and incentives available depending on state laws and provisions.

For help on selecting the correct furnace for you, contact Good Deals Heating and Cooling at 215-947-1166.

Tips for Maintaining a Gas Heating System

Good Deals Heating and Cooling gas heating systemIt’s cold out there, and you are sitting in your house with a great gas heating system. Ideally, you want your gas heating system to keep you cozy for a decade or more. This result can only be made possible with care and maintenance. With a few steps, you can avoid a significant breakdown and keep your heating system running efficiently.

Turn Off the Power

First things first! Safety measures must be on the top of the list. Before getting into the furnace cleaning, you have to take some steps to avoid any mishap. There will be a power switch on the furnace. Turn that off to cut the power and to make the heater safe for maintenance work.

Locate the Filter

Most people find it difficult to find the filter because every gas heating system has a different design so the filter can be anywhere within the system. Usually, it’s in the furnace itself, but some are in the vents.  You either need to look in the owner’s manual (hard copy or online) or if you like a challenge, just look in the furnace or vents in the walls or ceiling.

Take the Filter Out

Once you’ve located the filter all, you have to do take out the filter and note its dimensions. You will need those dimensions when purchasing a new one.

Cleaning or Replacing?

It is recommended that you replace the old filter after a specified time (mentioned below). But if you’re not in a mood for replacing it, then just cleaning will do too. Depending on the type of filter this means vacuuming the filter or running it under water.

How Often Should I Replace My Filter?

It depends on the type of the filter your furnace uses. If you have a polyester or pleated filter, then you should change it every three months. One month for a fiberglass filter. However, if you have an indoor pet or someone who smokes, you should change your filters every month.

Finishing Up

Now that you have a new or cleaned filter at hand your job is almost done, all you have to do is to reverse the entire process. Place the clean filter back in its place and tighten up all the screws if there are any.  Close the furnace or vent, turn on the power again, and you’re done!

This straightforward process will keep your furnace running efficiently and maintain excellent air quality throughout your home.

For help maintaining a gas heating system, contact Good Deals Heating and Cooling at 215-947-1166.

Tips on How to Avoid Heating Repair in Philadelphia

Heating Repair in Philadelphia PAA heating system, such as force air, gas or a furnace is a source of comfort but it can also be a source of anxiety when it starts to malfunction. Many home owners are anxious about the different hazards that a malfunctioning furnace or forced air system may bring them. It can take some time to fix a broken heater but what most people are worried about is the amount of money it will cost them to fix their furnace or heating system. If one is wanting to avoid costly repairs, here are some practical tips to help keep your HVAC in better shape:

Hire the Best Heating Services Provider

You will not be wasting your money if your hire a professional to do the upkeep on your heating needs. You will not be forced with costly furnace or forced air system repairs; they will stay on top of your heating system needs for you.

Have Regular Furnace or Forced Air System Inspections

It is very important to have regular HVAC inspections done. Companies such as Good Deals Heating & Cooling in Philadelphia will do annual inspections on your systems and let you know of any problems that exist.

Proper HVAC Maintenance

Proper maintenance is a task of both the home owner and heating services provider. It is important to keep the external surface of your furnace clean. Programmable thermostats are a very wise investment and will enable you to decrease the heat provided and will help you avoid costly repairs and keep your utility bills lower. You should also make sure that the replacement parts of the system is less than 10 years of age. It may sound too simple but it also very important to keep filters cleaned and change them every one to three months (depending upon the brand).

Use Systems Properly and Not Too Often

Excessive and inappropriate use of your furnace or forced air system is often the cause of heater problems. If you don’t know how to properly operate your system, ask someone and/or read the owner’s manual.

In spite of all your efforts to avoid costly heating system repairs, there will come a time when your heating systems will stop working properly and will need to be looked at by a professional. You should never try to fix your furnace or forced air system yourself. When you are ready to have your furnace looked at, call Good Deals Heating & Cooling and they will be able to work on oil furnaces, gas furnaces, and electric forced air systems.