Buying A New Furnace? Start With Size & Fuel Type

Time for a furnace replacement?

It's a tough pill to swallow, but when your furnace stops working and no amount of maintenance or repair seems to be fixing it, it's time to start shopping for a new one.    

While a furnace is a non-negotiable must-have for homeowners familiar with Kingston winters, it can tough to know how to find the right one for your needs.

So let's start slow and break it down: today we're going to look at two key questions to ask before you begin your search for a new furnace. 

  • What fuel type should I choose for my furnace?
  • What size furnace do I need for my home?

These starting points will help you decide on the best system for your budget and how to lower your home heating bills, reduce energy output - and stop all those repair calls. 

What fuel type should I choose for my new furnace?

There are four fuel types to choose from:

  • Gas-powered
  • Oil-powered
  • Electrical
  • Modulating

Gas-powered furnaces

  • The most common types in North America
  • Gas used to ignite burner, heating air inside furnace
  • Air is blown out through duct system to heat your home

Oil-powered furnaces

  • Same operation as gas furnaces, but oil for fuel
  • Often found in colder regions or homes that can’t be connected to gas line

Electrical furnaces

  • Use heating elements inside unit to heat air before blowing it through duct system
  • Often more expensive up front, but can also be more fuel-efficient available and save money in long run

Modulating furnaces

  • Consistently running to provide precise temperature settings
  • Operate at a high-efficiency rate, but typically cost more initially

What size furnace should I get?

The following factors will be looked at to determine the proper size for your new furnace.

  • The size of your home
  • The amount of heat your furnace produces (in BTUs)
  • Efficiency of furnace

Heating capacity

Furnaces measure heating capacity in BTUs (British thermal units).

A BTU is the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit.

The average furnace typically produces between 80,000 and 100,000 BTUs an hour.

Furnace efficiency

Every furnace is rated with an Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) rating.

All gas-powered furnaces in Canada are required to have a minimum rating of 90% AFUE, but more efficient furnaces can reach up to 97% efficiency.

The total amount of BTUs produced by your furnace is calculated by comparing the efficiency rating to the heating capacity.

For example, if you have a furnace that has the capacity to produce 100,000 BTUs of heat an hour, but it only has an 85% AFUE rate, the actual amount of heat it is producing is only 85,000 BTUs.

The higher the AFUE rating, the more efficient your furnace is at producing heat.

The size of your home

The size of your home can have a huge impact on your furnace's overall performance, such as how well it maintains heat.

Your home's age, orientation, windows, and insulation also all play a part in the furnace’s operation.

Because of how complicated this is, HVAC professionals have devised an equation called the Manual J Load calculation to find the optimal size of furnace you need for your home.

Find the right fuel & furnace size with Haven Home Heating today.

A new furnace is a big investment.

The pros at Haven Home can help you break it into more manageable chunks, starting with size & fuel, so you can feel confident in making the right decision for your needs, budget and home comfort.

Call us at 613-900-7031 today.