A forced air furnace is the most popular type of home heating system in the country, and for very good reason. If you’re weighing home heating options for a heating replacement, upgrade or for new home design, take a look at the strengths and deficiencies of furnaces to make an informed decision for your project.
Forced Air Furnace
A forced air furnace is a heating system that burns a fuel source, typically natural gas, oil or propane, to produce heat, and forces the heated air through a network of air ducts to the living spaces of the home. These are the basic workings:
- The furnace receives a call for heating from the thermostat.
- A valve releases the fuel source.
- The fuel is ignited and heats the furnace.
- A blower pulls air into the return air ducts and across the furnace heat exchanger.
- The heated air is forced through the supply air ducts to the living spaces.
- The warm airflow circulates from the supply outlets, through the living spaces and back through the return grilles.
Strengths and Deficiencies
If you are comparing different heating system choices and you need to know the pros and cons of furnace systems, you are on the right track.
- Natural gas is historically an affordable and readily available fuel source.
- You have many options for air filters or ducted air cleaning systems, such as HEPA, electronic and UV-light filtration systems.
- Forced air furnaces quickly and sufficiently heat the home
- Can be fitted with an A/C system (evaporator coil) to provide home cooling, and a hybrid heating system for maximizing the most efficient energy source (gas/oil or electricity).
Many of the deficiencies of older furnaces are not present in new high-efficiency furnaces. Sealed sidewall venting prevents back-drafting, and noise is dramatically reduced with two-stage gas valves and variable-speed blowers. Zoning systems are nice add-ons to the ductwork which helps distribute heating evenly to only the zones you need at any given time.
A forced air furnace makes better sense than ever for efficient and comfortable home heating. Please contact us at Roth Heating & Cooling for more information.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).