Living in New York means you must have a furnace that can battle back freezing temperatures. Not all furnaces are created equal or even intended to perform well in New York’s demanding climate. Luckily, many fine furnaces are on the market that can stand up to the cold and keep utility bills under control.
Gas, Electric, or Heating Oil?
Gas furnaces are by far the most popular in northern climates. They produce heat efficiently and cost much less to run than an electric furnace. Electric furnaces still get the job done in cold climates, but you’ll have high electric bills. However, they cost less to buy compared to gas furnaces.
They present a viable choice for keeping a house warm through a New York winter as does heating oil. A heating oil furnace gets hot faster than a natural gas furnace. People who can’t get gas at their homes often choose heating oil.
Determine the Right Furnace Size
On top of considering fuel type, you must also think about furnace size. This is expressed in Btu output, such as 40,000 Btu or 60,000 Btu. Larger homes need furnaces with higher Btu outputs. The square footage of your home provides the main variable for choosing the proper size. The number of doors and windows you have as well as your ceiling height influence the choice too.
Choosing a furnace of the wrong size causes problems. A furnace that’s too small for your space will run excessively and struggle to maintain your desired temperature. The prolonged operation will also drive up utility bills and decrease the life expectancy of the equipment.
A furnace that’s too large fails to meet your heating goals as well. It’ll probably suffer from frequent on-off cycles. Your home will feel mostly cold with intervals of hot air blowing for too short of a time to make you comfortable.
When you need a new furnace, you can rely on advice from Heatwave Heating & Cooling in Amherst, NY. We have many years of experience installing furnaces. You can consult a heating specialist who’ll calculate the correct size of furnace for you. After establishing that necessary variable, we’ll explain your other furnace options according to fuel type and efficiency rating.
Single and Multi-Stage Furnaces
One of the final decisions you’ll have to make when looking at your furnace options involves staging. This term refers to combustion and fan settings. A single-stage furnace only has one stage. It is either on or off and cannot adjust to a more efficient operation level, depending on the circumstances.
On the other hand, two-stage or modulating furnaces can reduce or increase output concerning heating demand. These furnaces achieve greater efficiency because they can run in a lower power consumption mode when it’s only slightly cold. In really freezing weather, however, they ramp up to a higher stage and increase heat output. Modulating furnaces offer the best performance in cold areas.
To recap, factors to consider when choosing a furnace include:
- Factors affecting your budget
- Fuel source
- Size of home
- Efficiency rating
The cost of your furnace will rise in relation to the size of your home. A large home makes a large furnace with a high Btu output necessary.
Furnaces also come with efficiency ratings that describe how well they convert energy into heat. A 90% efficiency rating means that 90% of the fuel consumed goes into heating your home. Furnaces with higher percentages use less fuel to create heat, which saves you money. To prepare for cold winters, you would ideally have a furnace that’s at least 90% efficient.
Lower efficiencies result in lower-cost furnaces but higher long-term utility bills. Higher efficiencies require a higher up-front price tag but result in lower long-term operational costs.