How Furnace Sizes Are Measured
The first step to finding the correctly sized furnace for your home is understanding how they are measured.
Furnace’s heating capacity is measured in thousands of British Thermal Units (BTU). But keep in mind that two furnaces with the same BTU can actually be different “sizes.”
Furnaces are rated based on how much fuel energy they consume when running. But the amount of energy they output can be different based on their efficiency rating.
For example, a 100,000 BTU furnace with outputs 95,000 BTU while a 100,000 BTU furnace with 80% AFUE only outputs 80,000 BTU. So when comparing furnace sizes, make sure you are comparing apples to apples (the output BTU).
The Importance of Getting a Correctly Sized Furnace
You, like many others, may think that “bigger is better” when it comes to purchasing a brand new furnace.
This is not always true. You definitely want to stay away from a furnace that is too small, but buying one that is too big can also be a problem.
- Consequences of a furnace that is too small – If you buy a furnace that is too small for your home, it will struggle to keep your house warm on cold nights. Furnaces that are too small will also make your energy bill higher.
- Consequences of a furnace that is too big – Furnaces that are too big for your home can be a problem because they will heat up your home too quickly, resulting in an inefficient operation known as “short cycling.”
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