The Different Types of Furnaces, Explained

The Different Types of Furnaces, Explained

In the United States, natural gas is the most common fuel for furnaces, at nearly 50%.

Whether you use natural gas or one of the other types of furnaces, for most of the United States having a heater isn’t optional. The weather in the United States has a huge range, but for most people winters are cold. If you live in one of these areas, you may be wondering what options do I have?

Here are the different types of furnaces, so you can decide for yourself which one will work best.

Natural Gas Furnaces

The most common type of furnace, the natural gas furnace uses natural gas to heat air. Natural gas is one of the most efficient fuels for heating, being 98% efficient. This doesn’t mean it is the cheapest, however, as natural gas prices fluctuate and are often higher than other forms of heating fuel.

A major advantage to natural gas heating is that the natural gas is piped into your home. This removes the need for tanks or reservoirs around your house. It is also cheaper than electricity and has remained the most popular form of heating for decades.

Oil Furnaces

Oil furnaces are popular in certain regions of the United State with New England being where these types of furnaces are most popular. Older houses often use oil furnaces, but there are still good reasons to stick with them. Not as efficient as natural gas, oil is often cheaper, sometimes by as much as 25%.

All modern furnaces have to maintain an efficiency of at least 80%, so there’s no reason to worry about the pollution that your oil furnace causes. If you live in an area where oil furnaces are popular there will also be heating oil deliveries available as well as other infrastructure.

Electric Furnaces

Electric furnaces are not as popular as other methods, but they are cheap and easy to install. While they last a long time, the problem comes with monthly costs. Electricity is often more expensive than gas or oil, so you will notice an increase in your monthly energy bills.

Propane Furnaces

Propane is a cheap, easy-to-use fuel that around 10% of the population use. This includes people who live in trailers and most of the people who live in RVs as well. Home heating by using propane is popular in rural areas, where many homes have their own tanks to use.

Propane isn’t as common in built-up or urban areas, where other options are superior such as natural gas. The reason for this is that propane depends on a stock stored at the residence, whereas natural gas is supplied via infrastructure piping.

Types of Furnaces

These are the main four types of furnaces that you’ll encounter whether you’re buying or renting a home. There are other options that have begun to become popular, such as geothermal heating, but for now, furnaces remain more common.

We would love to help you out this winter. If you need any work done on your heater, contact us.

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