Furnaces tend to last nearly two full decades before needing replaced. If it’s been that long since you had a new heating system installed in your home, you might not know the latest information about gas furnaces.
If that’s the case for you, Meyer Heating and Air is here to fill you in on some important facts to consider when it comes time to replace your system – or for times when you’re just feeling curious about what’s keeping your home warm and comfy.
Every modern gas furnace is equipped with safety features designed to respond when the air supply gets too warm, or when even the smallest gas leak is detected: limit switches and gas shut-off valves.
The limit switch turns the blower fan on and off, and shuts down the furnace completely to prevent overheating. The gas shut-off valve also completely turns off your furnace should a gas leak occur.
Although gas ultimately heats your home, your gas furnace needs a tiny amount of electricity to run.
Electricity is responsible for operating the blower motor, which is what distributes heat through your ductwork, and for the electronic ignition system, a safer and more modern alternative to a pilot light.
Electric furnaces cost a little bit less than gas systems, and they also can be more efficient. However, operating a gas furnace is less pricey each month.
You can calculate heating costs by multiplying the cost per unit times 1,000,000 BTUs/BTUs per unit/efficiency. The resulting number is the fuel cost of 1,000,000 BTUs of heat. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the average home requires 50 million to 150 million BTUs of heat each winter.
Assuming your house has an electric heater with 100 percent efficiency – a very up-to-date model – you can expect to pay about $35 per million BTUs of heat.
Natural gas is sold in therms; one therm is equal to 100,000 BTUs of heat. A therm costs about 80 cents per hour. A gas furnace with just 78 percent efficiency – that’s an older model – will cost about $14 per million BTUs of heat.
Remember that cost per BTU or therm will vary by location, current inflation, and a number of other factors. However, now, you’re more than capable of comparing costs for heating and air near you, using our mathematical formula.
Gas furnaces with an EnergyStar certification meet guidelines set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). These furnaces are designed to make your home more comfortable, without expending excess energy to do so. The result is lower utility bills and protecting the environment from pollution and greenhouse gasses.
Gas furnaces can be quite efficient! Whether a furnace meets efficiency requirements depends on which region of the country it came from. For example, here in St. Louis, certified gas furnaces are labeled with a blue EnergyStar logo. They’re up to 15 percent more energy efficient than baseline models, which can save you up to $85 per year in energy costs.
Price is only one tiny consideration when it comes to choosing a new furnace for your home. They come in a range of sizes, and the right size will heat or cool your home perfectly, without excess cycles or strain, which reduces lifespan.
A reputable heater installation expert can identify the furnace size your home needs and install it properly. They’re licensed and insured to protect you and your home, so you can trust them to get the job done right.
These very same experts know what your new furnace needs in terms of maintenance, so they can come back twice per year to ensure it’s running properly and is clean. You’re likely to reduce your need for repairs should you provide regular HVAC maintenance.
Ready to upgrade your gas furnace? Or perhaps you simply need some maintenance or a repair to your existing system.
Either way, you’ll want to call Meyer Heating and Air, located in Sappington, Missouri, and serving the entire St. Louis metro area.
When you need us, we’ll send one of our smart and talented HVAC technicians to your home or business to address your concern – or help you pick out and install a new Fujitsu General furnace or ductless heating system.
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