Learn the 3 Types of Furnaces: Single, 2-Stage and Variable
Whether you need a new furnace soon or are preparing well ahead of time, understanding some of your options can help you find a system that offers greater comfort and energy savings. Winters in this region are long and cold, and a heating system that enhances enjoyment of your home while reducing heating costs promotes a healthier living environment.
- Single-speed furnaces. This is the most basic system available and runs only on high speed. While they offer adequate home heating, they are noisier than multiple speed systems, use more fuel, and provide less even comfort.
- Two-stage furnaces. These systems adjust their running speeds based on the need for indoor heating. Most of the time it will run on its lower speed, ramping up only when there is a larger demand for indoor heating. A two-stage furnace saves energy and heats the home more evenly since it runs longer, albeit more slowly. Rooms located at the ends of the duct runs will warm more thoroughly because of the increased running time. A two-stage furnace running at its lower speed is fairly quiet.
- Variable-speed furnaces. These are one of the most recent heating innovations, also called modulating gas furnaces. Instead of operating at one or two speeds, the gas valve adjusts the amount of fuel the appliance burns based on the heat that’s needed. Temperature variability is small with these types. They can keep a home within one degree of the thermostat’s setting. These systems offer the greatest energy efficiency and quiet operation.
Unless you’re planning to upgrade your heating system to sell your home in the near future, investing in a multiple-speed system makes sense. They do cost more, but these systems recoup their higher cost each time they run, and offer measurably more comfort.
At Sobieski Services, Inc., our goal is to help our customers in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey learn more about energy and home comfort issues — especially HVAC and plumbing issues — so that they can save money and live in healthier, more comfortable homes.