Cincinnati Homeowner’s Guide to Buying a Furnace

October 18, 2013

If you’re ready to buy a new furnace for your Cincinnati home, there are many decisions to make—what size furnace do you need? What model or make should you choose? How do you select which heating company to install the furnace?

When shopping around for a new furnace, it’s most important to look into:

  • Furnace energy efficiency
  • Fuel type
  • Sizing of your unit
  • Whether you really need a new furnace
  • Which local HVAC company should install the new furnace

All of these choices can be overwhelming and you may feel like just making it through another cold Ohio winter with your current, less efficient furnace instead of figuring them out. Don’t fear—the experts at Rick’s Heating & Cooling are here to help answer all your questions and guide you through selecting a new furnace for your home.

Selecting Your Furnace’s Energy Efficiency

Energy efficiency is an important factor when comparing furnaces—when a furnace wastes heat, it takes more energy to keep your home warm and that can mean more expensive utility bills. You can compare models by using the rating of Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE). The AFUE measures how efficient the unit is in converting fuel energy into heat.

For example, a furnace with an AFUE of 85 percent means that 85 percent of the energy in the fuel (gas or oil) goes directly into heating your home, while the other 15 percent escapes (usually up a chimney).

At Rick’s we offer furnaces with great fuel efficiency for your Ohio home. Check out our range of furnaces you can select from following Armstrong Air models:

Choosing an Oil or Gas Furnace

Now you may be wondering whether you should select a gas or oil furnace for your Cincinnati home. The main difference in the two options is their AFUE ratings. According to the Department of Energy, most new oil furnaces rate between 80 – 90 percent AFUE, while comparable gas furnaces have AFUE ratings of 89 – 98 percent.

While it is clear that gas furnaces are typically more energy efficient than oil furnaces, other costs (including the new unit and cost of fuel) can even out the expenses.

Gas furnaces are more popular across America, but be sure to talk to a heating technician to make the best choice for your Cincinnati home.

What Size Furnace Do You Need?

If your furnace is too small for your home, it will work its hardest all winter and never fully or evenly heat your home. On the contrary, a furnace that is too large will waste energy cycling on and off throughout the winter.

The correct size of a furnace is determined by calculating your home’s heating requirements in Btu/hour—or the amount of energy needed to heat one pound of water by one degree. A professional HVAC expert can help calculate this number by factoring in your home’s insulation, ductwork, windows, and square footage.

Do You Really Need a New Furnace?

Did you know that the average high in Cincinnati for December and January is just around 40 degrees? And on average it drops below 22 degrees in the evenings. While a cup of tea might sound just right, those low temperatures can make for a long, chilly winter. Make sure that your family home is prepared to keep warm all winter long!

You may not realize it’s time for a new furnace installation. Here are some signs it’s time to call a local heating and cooling company for a furnace inspection and estimate:

  • Your furnace is more than 10 – 15 years old
  • Your heating bills continue to rise
  • Furnace repairs are becoming more frequent
  • Different rooms in your home are not heated evenly
  • Your burner flame is yellow or orange
  • Strange sounds are coming from your furnace

A professional heating and cooling company can tell you if it’s time and a smart decision. By installing a new furnace, you’ll benefit from a higher energy efficient furnace that is sized just right for your home.

Schedule a Furnace Installation in Cincinnati, Ohio

Now that you know everything you should as a homeowner looking to install a new furnace, it’s time to find a local, licensed heating and cooling company to get the job done right! It’s recommended that you get estimates from at least three different companies.

When researching these companies, it’s not just the price for a new installation that you should consider; be mindful to also look at each company’s:

  • Experience in the industry (in years)
  • Client testimonials
  • Licenses and expertise of employees
  • Better Business Bureau profile and other online reviews
  • Current coupons and promotions
  • Customer service
  • And more

Sometimes, the cheapest option is not always the best—it may become more of a hassle to reschedule service if your furnace was not installed properly the first time or if the technician shows up five hours after schedule.

At Rick’s Heating & Cooling, we have been in the HVAC business in the Cincinnati area since 1986 and strive to provide dependable and professional service to all of our local customers. We schedule all our appointments within a two-hour window and a call ahead so that you can avoid sitting around waiting on a service technicians. We also offer free estimates on all new, enhanced system installations. Check out our current specials and also read our testimonials from your Cincinnati neighbors.

Ready to schedule your new furnace installation? Contact us today!