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How Does A Gas Furnace Work?

January 24, 2023 | Blog

If you’re looking to install a new gas furnace but aren’t sure how they work or if there are other furnace options available, Barker’s Heating & Cooling is here to help. We know how important reliable heating is, so having a better understanding of how a gas furnace heats your home will aid in your decision-making process. Read on to learn more about the heating process and how to determine which furnace type is right for your home!

Gas Furnace Heating Cycle

There are many types of furnaces that utilize various kinds of fuel to provide heating, but most units run on either natural gas or liquid propane gas (LPG). Regardless of what fuel source they burn, all gas furnaces consist of the same parts and employ the same heating process. To understand the heating cycle, here are the different components of a gas furnace system:

  • Thermostat
  • Control board
  • Burners
  • Blower fan
  • Igniter
  • Heat exchanger
  • Flame detector
  • Plenums
  • Air filter
  • Gas valve
  • Transformer

The heating cycle begins once the gas pumps into your furnace from its fuel source location.

The burners release controlled amounts of gas, which the igniter lights. Flames require oxygen and therefore attract the cold air in your home, which enters the furnace through the return-air plenum. The burning gas then warms the cold air.

Exhaust from the fuel-burning process is then released from the unit through the exit vent and exhaust pipe. The heat exchanger is responsible for ensuring any combustion by-products remain separate from the air that is funneled back into your home. Exhaust fumes contain highly toxic carbon monoxide gas that is especially hazardous upon exposure if it were to enter your home.

Once the air is warmed, the supply-air plenum and blower fan redirects it throughout your home. As warm air distributes, your home’s internal temperature gradually increases until it reaches the desired setting according to your thermostat. When the thermostat detects the set temperature has been reached, it automatically shuts off the gas valve to pause the process until the temperature drops, and the cycle repeats.

Other Heater Replacement Options

According to Energy.gov, more than half of American homes use a natural gas-fired furnace, making natural gas the most popular heating fuel source amongst homeowners — and for many good reasons.

Natural gas is a clean-burning energy option with fewer emissions than other fuel types. Although they do tend to cost more than other heaters, most new gas furnaces have high-efficiency ratings. The higher a heater’s efficiency is, the less you’ll pay in operational costs, making gas furnaces a wise investment.

With all that said, several other furnace options are still available that offer a wide range of benefits and may better align with your unique heating needs. Different types of furnaces include:

  • Wood-burning
  • Oil-fired
  • Waste oil
  • Electric
  • Duel-fueled heat pump

The number of options may seem overwhelming when trying to select a new home furnace. However, there are many factors to consider when making a decision that can help narrow down your search, such as:

  • Size
  • AFUE ratings
  • Total-cost-of-ownership (installation, energy, maintenance and repair costs)
  • Average lifespan
  • Warranties

When in doubt, consult a professional furnace technician when purchasing a new heater. Our team is a knowledgeable source when it comes to heating equipment and can examine your specific home needs to recommend the best furnace for your home.

Furnace Installation In College Station

To find out if a gas furnace installation is a suitable choice for your home, our team at Barker’s Heating & Cooling offers free second opinions on new system installs. We proudly service the HVAC needs of our community, so if you’re in the Brazos Vally area, let our highly-trained and knowledgeable team of professionals answer any questions you may have. Call us today!

Why Choose Barker's?

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You will save a minimum of 30% on your heating and cooling costs or we will refund double-the-difference of your savings not realized during the first year.
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If we do not have your new system operating by the date promised, we will pay you $500 for your inconvenience.
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We guarantee that the equipment we have installed will perform as we have stated, or we will remove it and return 100% of your investment.

What Our Customers Are Saying

Very Professional

Chandler did an excellent job checking out our heat pump. He was very professional, communicated well, was responsive to our questions and I was very happy with everything he did.

Steve M.

Honest and Trustworthy

Our AC went out during a late summer heatwave. Called Barkers and Victor worked very hard to get the outside unit up and running. Two hours later we conceded to the death of a 29 yo unit. Victor notified the office the next morning, and within 24 hours we had a complete new system installed, and the house cooled by the time I got home from work. Highly recommend. Honest and trustworthy.

Susan H.

Very Impressed

We were impressed by this company from the first phone call. Reed was an exceptional young man; very personable and professional. The installation team of Mike, John and Cody did an excellent job. Barker’s is a business with high standards and we are very satisfied with everything about them. So glad we found this company!

Donna D.