Are you one of those people who barely pay attention to their furnace or those who completely forget about it? If so, this is the article for you. The term two-stage furnace is non-existent in many people’s minds.
Most people hear this word from a contractor’s salesman, and the chances that they do are minimal. If possible, you must learn about it if you would like to have it installed at home.
You can get directed by homeowners who are fond of using it or, better yet, professionals. The latter will be a great option because they are conversant with that area, and as a result, everything will be more transparent.
The following points show whether a two-stage furnace saves you money or not; read more to find out.
What Is a Two-Stage Furnace?
Its name clearly explains that it is a furnace with two levels of heating output. In the first stage, the fire is low, and its running capacity is rated to be between 70 to 80%.
It does not start at a high fire mode when the furnace is turned on but instead at a low fire mode.
It goes to the second stage gradually, although under certain conditions that entail the duration at which the furnace has been functioning and when the thermostat feels the need to increase the temperature by more than two degrees.
The Benefits of Two-Stage Furnaces That Deem Them Worth Every Penny
Here are some of the perks to a two-stage furnace that might make it worth the cost.
It Saves on Energy Costs
The question that customers inquire most about the two-stage furnace is whether it is worth it: well, the answer is yes.
Although these furnaces do not cost peanuts to purchase and install, you will love the fact that they have a 20 to 25% fuel efficiency advantage. The thought of how the cumulative energy savings will cancel out all the extra costs, you incur in 20 years is excellent.
It Doesn’t Cause a Lot of Noise When Operating
In case you did not know, the process of fuel combustion is noisy. However, when the burners move to operate at the low stage, they tend to burn more quietly.
Also, if a two-stage furnace is incorporated with a variable-speed blower, the operation will run quieter, although on lower settings.
More Balanced Temperatures
It is good to point out that a single-stage furnace shuts on and off quite often, especially when there are abrupt temperature drops. On the other hand, the two-stage furnace frequently remains in the low-intensity maintenance mode, which means that the temperatures will not drop beyond one or two degrees.
This furnace works under the same principle as the air filter: a longer working furnace equals a longer working humidifier. However, this principle may not be relevant during winter as the air tends to be very dry.
They Are More Efficient
When it comes to how long it will work, the two-stage furnace is for the win since it can operate for a long duration compared to the single-stage furnace.
Enhanced Air Quality
This occurs when the furnace runs for a long duration hence causing air circulation through the intake vents. The latter has air filters that help remove dust, pollen, dirt, irritants, and allergens, among many others, which can endanger the health of people living in that surrounding.
What Is the Average Cost of a 2 Stage Furnace?
Most prospective customers always want to know how much something is before buying and whether it includes installation in the case of a two-stage furnace. The price range of these furnaces ranges from $2,500 to $4,000 with the installation included.
The two-stage furnace solely costs $1,500 to $2,000; hence, the additional costs are labor costs. Some models are sold at higher prices ranging from $4,000 to $5,000 inclusive of installation.
You may have noticed that the two-stage furnaces are more expensive than the single-stage furnaces by $500. If you want to buy a variable-speed blower, you should know that you will have to top up the buying and installing cost at $200.
Hence, carry extra money just in case to avoid leaving it behind.
Things To Know Before Choosing A Two-Stage Furnace
If you thought that the only decision you will have to make is choosing a two-stage furnace when buying it, you have got it all wrong. There is more to choose from, including the fuel type and heat output, to mention a few.
The fuel types are as follows, propane, oil or electric, and natural gas; hence, you have to think critically. It is often determined by the kind of furnace you want or have, which is, in this case, a two-stage furnace.
For example, the electric furnace requires you to be close to a gas line as it won’t be cost-effective when you want to switch.
On the other hand, natural gas is usually cheaper than oil. Also, the latter two are inexpensive compared to electricity; while doing so, ensure that you look deeper into their disadvantages because you may not be able to live with some.
The energy efficiency is also essential and is measured by AFUE, the acronym for annual fuel utilization efficiency. Note that whenever a furnace has an AFUE of 80%, the remaining 20% is usually lost while the previous is converted to heat.
There are federal rules that state that the lowest efficiency rating for the gas-and-oil-fueled furnaces is 78%. That is, however, excluded in mobile homes whose minimum efficiency rating allowed is 75%.
The existing high-efficiency units tend to have an annual fuel utilization efficiency of 85% or more, for example, the electric furnaces. When purchasing a two-stage furnace, consider your furnace’s variable speed because it comes with many benefits compared to the fixed speed.
The furnace’s size matters too, and contrary to what you would have thought, the bigger one is not always fit for you. This is because it may cycle on and off one too many times, consume a lot of power, not to mention shorten its lifespan.
However, don’t think that the smaller one is the best for you as it has its limitations. The smaller it is, the more it will struggle to provide the power to keep your home warm when you need it to.
By now, you have seen that the size and power work hand in hand; hence, keep this in mind. It won’t be easy to figure out the BTU, also the British Thermal Units, which measure the size and power of furnaces on your own, and you may have to reach out to a professional HVAC technician; they are experts.
The above points show detailed information about the two-stage furnace. The conclusion is that the two-stage furnace saves its customers money along the way. In any case, you plan on buying it, ensure that you consider all the factors pointed out. Remember, the size matters a great deal, and you would not want to invest in a furnace either too big or too small and regret later. If you do not recall everything, ensure that you seek advice from the professionals you will encounter. Also, research where to find a good dealer to sell you a legit two-stage furnace before making hasty purchase decisions. When looking for an HVAC technician, ascertain that they are fit for the job by checking their credentials and what have you. Also, consider getting them from a reputable company, too; it will save you a lot of time and money.