If you are building a home or renovating an older one, one of the decisions you have to make is the kind of HVAC system you have to install. Many people have been experiencing indecisiveness when it comes to choosing a gas or oil furnace. One of the common approaches made by homeowners is to consider the cost of operation which is determined mainly by the cost of fuel. Historically, oil is one of the most expensive fuels in heating homes compared to gas. The volatility of oil is a factor many homeowners tend to fear because they don’t know how the oil prices will turn tomorrow or the day after.
Though the concerns about the type of fuel powering the furnace are genuine, there are many more factors that should be given priority when deciding on the kind of system to use. Below is a breakdown of what constitutes a gas and oil furnace outlining the pros and cons of each so that you can make an informed and solid decision.
These furnaces use oil to operate. In terms of cost, oil furnaces are much cheaper to run compared to gas powered models. In addition, oil furnaces give more heat per British Thermal Unit (BTU) compared to gas. Oil furnaces according to research are much easier to service.
However, on the flipside, oil heating comes with its own demerits. One of the outstanding disadvantages of oil furnaces is that fact that they get dirty because soot builds up requiring filters to be changed regularly as well as other maintenance operations. Homes that have oil furnaces installed require an onsite fuel tank preferably an underground tank. The fuel efficiency of these furnaces is also lower.
Gas is clean energy and in the world we live in today where global warming and going green are shaping national agenda, heating with gas is beneficial in all circumstances. Compared to other fuels such as coal, electricity and oil, gas is less expensive and gas heating furnaces require lesser maintenance than other types of furnaces. The annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) of gas is as high as 98 compared to that of oil furnaces which is shy of 90. This indicates that has furnaces are more fuel efficient.
The disadvantage of gas furnaces is that they are more expensive compared to the oil-burning types. If the area you are living has no gas line, you will not be able to use gas and that can be a major disadvantage. The efficiency of gas in terms of BTUs is lower than oil.
Therefore, when building your home and want to install a furnace, gas furnaces may be the best option if your area has a gas line. Oil furnaces may be a bit tricky because of the heavy maintenance demands and the fact that you have to always fill your onsite tank so that it doesn’t run dry.