What's The Difference Between A Budget Furnace And A High-End Model?

20 December 2021
 Categories: , Blog

Gas furnaces come in a wide range of styles to fit a variety of homes and budgets. When choosing a furnace for your house, you'll need to make a decision about which unit works best for you. Your installer will help you decide on an appropriate capacity for your new heater, but what about other options, such as high-efficiency or variable speed models?

The difference in cost between budget models and more fully-featured high-end models can be substantial. Understanding how these furnaces differ can help you make a better decision for your family and budget. This guide will go over a few of the advantages of high-end furnaces, as well as a few reasons you may want to stick with a more affordable model.

Why Should You Choose a Budget Furnace?

Entry-level or budget furnaces will typically offer the best "bang for your buck." These furnaces cost less to purchase, and an appropriately-sized budget furnace will keep your home warm and comfortable. US standards require all furnaces to have a minimum 80 AFUE rating, which means that even budget models can convert 80% of their fuel into heat.

These lower-cost options are excellent if you're on a budget or prefer to save money upfront on installation costs vs. later on your utility bills. While single-stage entry-level units may sometimes produce inconsistent heat, they're more than capable of providing heat for a typical home, even in frigid climates.

Why Should You Choose a High-End Furnace?

At the other end of the scale, high-end furnaces come with many bells and whistles that you won't find on entry-level models. These furnaces typically have the highest possible efficiency ratings, with AFUE values of 96% or even higher. Additionally, top-tier models feature variable burners that can adjust heat levels to maintain a consistent temperature throughout your home.

While high-end furnaces are impressive, they're also relatively expensive compared to lower-end models. They're a good fit if you don't have budget concerns or want to get the most efficiency possible from your furnace, but they may not suit all homes. If you're considering one of these options, you'll want to balance the cost versus the expected benefits carefully.

Is There a Middle Ground?

Of course, you don't have to choose one of these extremes. There are also options in the middle ground, such as two-stage units that can bridge the gap between single-stage and variable furnaces. These furnaces can offer superior comfort and efficiency to entry-level units without the high cost of top-end models.

The best way to determine if one of these models is a good fit for you to is to discuss your budget with your heater installation professional. They can recommend a furnace that's affordable while also offering the features you need to keep your home feeling cozy all winter long.