Improving Your Air Conditioner

4 Questions to Ask Yourself before Installing a New Furnace

A brand-new furnace represents one of the most important investments you can make in your home. Shopping for a new furnace takes time and effort. When you finally find one that's within your budget, you'll want to make sure you're choosing the right furnace for your home's heating needs. Here are a few questions to ask yourself before you make your final decision regarding heater installation.

1. Is It the Right Furnace for Your Home's Heating Load?

Homes come in all sizes and layouts, which can make designing an effective heating system a challenge. When it comes to furnaces and heat pumps, one size rarely fits all. So it's up to you and your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) contractor to figure out your home's heating load and make sure the furnace you've chosen can shoulder the load.

Your HVAC contractor can perform a load calculation that takes several aspects of your home into account. These aspects range from square footage and overall layout to existing energy efficiency upgrades and even your home's orientation relative to the sun.

2. Is It Compatible with Your Existing Ventilation System?

There's a good chance your home's ductwork is custom tailored to your old heating system. If that's the case, make sure your new furnace is able to work with your existing ducts and indoor air handler. Otherwise, you'll need to entirely redo your heating and ventilation system to get the best performance from your new furnace.

3. Does It Offer the Features You Want?

Today's furnaces offer a wide range of features that improve your overall comfort while reducing energy consumption. These features include variable-speed fans that ramp down to whisper-quiet levels for reduced noise and energy usage. Consider the features you want in a furnace and look for one that offers these features within your budget.

4. How Long is the Warranty for Your New Furnace?

You might not need it right now, but a good warranty comes in handy when the unthinkable happens years into your furnace ownership. Warranty coverage can help offset the cost of parts if your furnace suffers a catastrophic failure due to a defect or anything else covered under the warranty.

Most furnace manufacturers cover basic furnace components, including blower motors, igniters and burners, under a limited warranty lasting anywhere from 1 to 10 years. The heat exchanger is covered under a separate 20-year or limited lifetime warranty. You can also purchase extended warranty coverage that adds several more years of coverage for your furnace.