In the marketplace today, you are likely to be faced with three types of furnace when you are shopping for a new model. Two of the most popular choices are single stage and variable speed models. Many homeowners feel a little overwhelmed when they are faced with the decision to choose between these two types of furnace, so we will explore the differences here.
What is a Single Stage Furnace?
Single stage or “single speed” furnaces as the name would suggest only have one stage or speed of heating. Usually, these models only have high heat output which continually disperses heat at maximum capacity, regardless of the indoor or outdoor temperature. A single stage furnace only has an on or off speed without any other factors to gauge or influence performance. This means that this type of furnace is not considered to be very cost efficient. You may find that your energy bills are far higher than normal in the winter months, just from your furnace running.
Variable Speed Model Basics:
A variable speed furnace allows operation on a variety of speeds. This creates an ability to more precisely control the flow of hot or cool air throughout the home. Since the airflow control is improved, it can also balance the temperature and humidity for a more comfortable atmosphere inside the home. This type of furnace uses advanced technology to constantly monitor sensor data from the HVAC system. It can then automatically adjust the heat and comfort level.
Another aspect of this type of furnace is that the fan motor operates in different stages. This motor allows for heated air to be dispersed and controlled for improved comfort. This means that even if the furnace is off, the fan motor can still operate to circulate air around the home.
The only potential downside of a variable speed furnace is that if your filters are dirty or there is any type of blockage in the ventilation system, performance will be inhibited as airflow circulation is compromised.
Variable speed furnaces are considered to offer a more intelligent design. Since data is collected and used to improve performance, you can also enjoy energy savings compared to a single speed model. This means that while it may cost a little more for this type of furnace initially, it will more than pay for itself in the long term.
Choosing a New Furnace:
The decision of which new furnace to choose depends on a number of factors. You will need a model that can satisfy your heating requirements based on the size and layout of your home, the insulation, and current ductwork. Of course, you will also need to consider your budget. For this reason, before making a purchase decision, it is a good idea to speak to a professional HVAC contractor. An experienced professional will have the expertise and knowledge to assess your home and determine the correct options. They will be able to provide guidance and recommendations, so you can have confidence that your new furnace is perfectly tailored to suit the unique characteristics and requirements of your home.