If you’re in the market for a new furnace, you may end up facing the dilemma of which type of furnace to purchase. The gas vs. oil furnace decision isn’t an easy one, especially if your home isn’t already set up for either alternative.
Gas vs. Oil Furnace
Following are some pros and cons of each furnace alternative:
- Energy efficiency. A high-efficiency natural gas furnace is your best bet when it concerns efficiency. More of the burned fuel turns into heat for your home — some 90-plus percent for high-efficiency furnaces, as compared to 80 to 90 percent for a new oil furnace. The energy efficiency advantage is important if you’re concerned about energy conservation and the cost of heating bills.
- Cost of installation. Fuel oil furnaces are usually cheaper to purchase than the same-sized gas furnace, as much as 10 to 25 percent lower.
- Set-up. If your home already has gas lines connected to an outside source of natural gas but isn’t set up for fuel oil – no fuel tank, no pipes to a tank – sticking with natural gas probably makes the most sense. Similarly, if your home has an oil tank and lines into the house but no connection to the gas supply lines, sticking with fuel oil may be the right decision.
- Cost of gas vs. oil. As a result of ramped-up domestic petroleum production and a decline in worldwide demand, natural gas is relatively cheap nowadays. These trends haven’t resulted in lower prices for fuel oil. Dollar for dollar, you’ll get a lot more for your money with natural gas than fuel oil.
In many parts of the country, natural gas heating is also more affordable than electric heat pump heating. This is the case even though heat pumps are much more energy efficient than gas furnaces, just not enough to make up the cost differential between natural gas and electricity.
For more help in sorting out the gas vs. oil furnace decision, please contact us at Carefree Comfort, Inc. Heating & Air Conditioning. We provide superior services in Glencoe, Lake Bluff, Lakeforest and other area communities.