What Homeowners Should Know Before Switching Heating Systems

What Homeowners Should Know Before Switching Heating SystemsIf you’re thinking about switching heating systems, spring’s a good time to go shopping. First, HVAC contractors are more likely to offer post-season discounts on furnaces as cold weather turns warm. Second, in this transitional season before the summer air conditioning crunch, crews are readily available for installation and other service.

Switching heating systems involves many issues. The upgrade process isn’t necessarily symmetrical. For example, in a house heated by electricity, switching to gas-fired heating may also necessitate installation of pipes and venting. In the reverse, however, an electrical furnace can usually replace a gas-fired furnace with no additional home modifications.

How do the available heating options stack up for a homeowner thinking about switching heating systems?

Gas-Fired Furnace

Natural gas remains the preferred heating method. About 60% of Indiana homes are heated by gas. Though initial purchase price is higher, a gas furnace is still the most affordable way to keep your house warm—about 20% less expensive than other alternatives. Gas-fired furnaces produce powerful heat output averaging 130 to 160 degrees and have an estimated service life of 20 years.

Electric Furnace

About 25% of Indiana homes utilize electric heat. Installation is typically a quick, uncomplicated procedure in most houses. Electric furnaces typically score the longest expected service life—up to 30 years—and offer the highest efficiency rating. However, despite superior efficiency, since electricity rates still exceed natural gas prices, the monthly operating cost of an electric furnace will be higher than a gas furnace.

Fuel Oil

Though still common in the northeast, here in Hoosier country only about 1% of homes utilize a fuel oil furnace. In this region, fuel oil is markedly more expensive than gas or electricity and costs continue rising. Keeping sufficient fuel supply requires regular deliveries by truck and a large fuel storage tank on the property. The fuel oil furnace as well as ancillary equipment such as pumps and filters impose more maintenance requirements than either of the alternate heating methods.

Switching heating systems requires careful consideration and sound advice. Contact Paitson Bros., Terre Haute’s established HVAC provider since 1922, for more information.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Terre Haute, Indiana about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 812-645-6859. 

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    Jeff Paitson Jeff Paitson is a third generation business owner who continues to run the business with the same values that have been passed down from previous generations since 1922.

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    Ethan Ethan Rayburn is a lifelong resident of Terre Haute and a 2005 graduate of Purdue University.

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    Ethan enjoys singing and was a member of the Purdue Varsity Glee Club. He also enjoys playing and coaching soccer, spending time with his family and two young boys, and volunteering his time and resources with his church, Terre Haute First Baptist Church, which he has attended from a very young age.
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