A furnace is a major and necessary piece of equipment for your home. The fact that your system should perform for approximately two decades factors into the initial cost. In general, the answer to the question “How much does a furnace cost?” will be somewhere between $1,500 and $5,000 plus labor costs for installation.
The size and efficiency of a gas, oil, or electric furnace account for most of the price differences between models. Size is not something that you can play with in an attempt to save money. You need to buy a furnace that is the right size for your home. The square footage of your home determines proper furnace size.
Relationship Between Furnace BTUs and Home Size
As soon as you start shopping for furnaces, you will encounter the term BTU. This stands for British thermal unit. It is the unit of measurement that expresses how much energy is needed to produce heat. Technically, 1 BTU equals the heat needed to raise the temperature of 1 pound of water by 1 degree.
The BTU figures listed on new furnaces indicate how much area they can heat. A larger home will need a furnace with a higher BTU than a small home. Therefore, if you have a relatively small home, you will be buying a furnace with a lower BTU.
Matching the correct number of BTUs to your home’s square footage matters for performance, equipment longevity, and comfort. A furnace with insufficient BTUs will not be able to heat a home adequately. It will struggle against the cold and experience wear and tear at a faster rate. Buying a furnace that is too small will not save you money. Your home will be chilly, and you’ll need to replace the furnace prematurely.
The Influence of Location on Furnace Cost
Our relatively cold climate demands a furnace capable of warming a home that’s located in an area that experiences low exterior temperatures. Homes in warmer regions can get sufficient warmth from furnaces with fewer BTUs. A home in the Northeast, however, needs a furnace with higher BTU output.
Heat Loss Calculation
When it comes to sizing your heating system, a heat loss calculation should be performed to make sure the right size system is selected. It looks at the type of home, source, footage, direction it faces, quantity of windows and doors, floor, wall and ceiling insulations and other factors to get it right.
How Insulation Affects Furnace Choice
The insulation and weathertightness of your home can help you save money when buying a furnace. If your home is well-insulated, you can choose a BTU level on the lower end of the range for this climate.
A drafty home, on the other hand, will need a furnace with a BTU level on the high end of the range. Air leaks and uninsulated walls allow the building to shed heat. As a result, the furnace will have to create more heat energy to keep up.
Furnace Efficiency Ratings
In addition to BTU consumption level, a furnace will display an efficiency rating. The efficiency rating does influence upfront cost. Lower efficiency results in furnaces with lower prices. Higher efficiency means that the furnace will cost more.
The efficiency rating describes how many BTUs of actual heat reach the air. A 100,000-BTU furnace with 80% efficiency delivers 80,000 BTU of heat energy to the home. A high-efficiency 100,000-BTU furnace that is 96% efficient transfers 96,000 BTU of energy to the air.
When choosing between a low or high-efficiency furnace, keep in mind operating costs. The low-efficiency furnace saves you money upfront but will use more fuel to run. The upfront cost of a high-efficiency furnace produces a return over time with lower fuel consumption.
Furnace Manufacturing Costs
The price tag that you see on a furnace reflects what went into building it. A larger furnace that uses many BTUs requires more resources to build than a smaller one. A high-efficiency furnace includes more complex mechanisms to manage energy use than a low-efficiency furnace.
The Importance of Professional Furnace Installation
After paying for a new furnace, you need to pay for installation. Even skilled do-it-yourselfers hire professional furnace technicians like the trusted team at Oliver Heating & Cooling. The warranty on a new furnace requires professional installation. Amateur installation will deprive you of any recourse on this major purchase should something go wrong.
A professional furnace installer also ensures that the job is done in compliance with local building codes. A furnace involves gas and electrical connections that must be done right to prevent fire or gas leak hazards. Carbon monoxide leaks in particular are extremely dangerous and can even be deadly.
As the most trusted heating company in the Delaware Valley and at the Jersey Shore for over 50 years, Oliver performs furnace installations that you can count on. As a licensed installer, we fulfill the requirements set forth by a manufacturer’s warranty. To get a quote on a new furnace, contact Oliver today about our furnace installation services.