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How Gas and Electric Furnaces are Different

Space Heater Safety Tips

Keep your Buffalo home warm and cozy throughout the colder months.

The majority of US households turn to furnaces to keep themselves and their homes warm and cozy throughout the colder months. Your Buffalo New York home is likely no exception. Data from the 2015 Residential Energy Consumption Survey (RECS) shows that the majority of American households use one of three types of equipment as their main source of heat during the winter: natural gas furnaces, electric furnaces, or electric heat pumps. We are going to review the two main sources of heat in Western New York and look at how gas and electric furnaces are different.

What are Gas Furnaces?

Gas furnaces use one of two forms of fuel: natural gas or propane. To have a gas furnace, you need to have a gas connection at your home.

These furnaces feed fuel into a combustion chamber, where it is ignited, generating heat energy. This heat energy is transferred to your home’s air by way of the heat exchanger. The blower pushes the heated air through the air ducts of your home, gradually heating each room to the temperature you set the thermostat at.

There are several benefits to gas furnaces in your Buffalo home:

– Low Impact by Power Outages: If the power goes out during a blizzard, most gas furnaces can continue to heat your home and protect your pipes. This of course depends on the unit, but since the gas furnace is powered by gas and not electricity, it should not be affected.
– Cost Effective: Since gas is often cheaper than electricity, you will likely save money on your energy bills. This is a key component as to how gas and electric furnaces are different.

Gas furnaces are typically built with safety sensors and mechanisms designed to keep the combustion process consistent and safe; however, one of the potential downsides of a gas furnace is the possible risk of a fault with the heat exchanger, which could allow gas to enter the air of the home.

What are Electric Furnaces?

Electric furnaces come in many forms and draw on the electricity used throughout your Buffalo New York home.

With an electric furnace, electricity is run through heating elements, heating them up. A blower pushes cold air past these super-heated elements, heating the air before further pushing it through ducts to the living spaces of your home.

Let’s review the benefits of electric furnaces:

– No Gas Connection Needed: A main reason gas and electric furnaces are different is in the source they use to heat your home. Unlike gas furnaces, electric furnaces rely on electricity and not a gas connection to produce heat.
Lifespan: Most electric furnaces last longer than their gas counterparts, which means you might not need to replace the system as often as with a gas furnace.
– Lower Installation Costs: While exact prices can vary between models, many electric furnaces are less expensive upfront than their gas counterparts with similar AFUE ratings and features.

What Type of Furnace is More Popular?

Broad ranges in winter temperatures and capabilities of different technologies mean that certain heating choices are better suited to certain climates and homes. Overall, 47% of households rely on natural gas as their main heating fuel, compared with 36% who rely on electricity (EIA).

The type of furnace you have in your Buffalo home can depend on many factors. If you are looking to install a new furnace in your home, you should consider the options, your heating needs, and the energy efficiency and costs of both gas and electric furnaces.

At Reimer Home Services we can help you make the switch to the comfort, efficiency, and reliability of a new furnace this winter. We’re an experienced and locally trusted team for new furnace installation in Buffalo.

Start with a free in-home estimate. We’ll work with you to find the right heating system for your home and your budget. Make the right call and talk to us about new gas and electric furnace installation here in Buffalo and Western New York.

Contact us today.