Oil vs. Gas furnaces: Let’s Weigh the Pros and Cons

By December 11, 2014 Blogs No Comments

oil vs. gas furnacesIf you are upgrading your furnace or are installing a new one, you’ll need to decide between operating an oil or a gas furnace. Both fuels are commonly available in the Houston area, and both types of furnaces have advantages, depending on the specific installation.

Oil Furnace Advantages

Oil furnaces, unlike gas, receive fuel from a tank located nearby on the property, allowing for flexible installations. These furnaces are still commonly used in areas that are not equipped with natural gas lines, and they offer the following benefits:

  • An oil furnace can be installed in many locations not serviced by natural gas lines.
  • Oil furnaces offer more heat than the equivalent amount of natural gas per BTU.
  • Oil furnaces cost less to purchase than natural gas furnaces.
  • The maintenance routine of oil furnaces is relatively easy compared to gas furnaces, and it is usually included as part of the fuel delivery service.

On the other hand, a separate tank is required for an oil furnace, which is usually less efficient. Furthermore, oil is more expensive to operate over the heating season than gas is.

Gas Furnace Advantages

Gas furnaces are fueled by a constant supply of natural gas that is piped directly into your home, and because of the constant supply, these furnaces are a popular choice where natural gas is available. Gas furnaces offer the following advantages over oil furnaces:

  • Gas furnaces are much more efficient than oil furnaces, with common AFUE ratings of 90 to 98 percent, compared to modern oil furnaces that range from 80 to 90 percent.
  • Heating with natural gas can cost as little as a third of the price per season as heating with oil.
  • Gas furnaces require very little maintenance compared to oil furnaces.
  • Gas furnaces tend to be quieter and cleaner when operating.

The disadvantages of gas furnaces include the need for a dedicated supply line and a higher initial purchase price.

For more information regarding gas and oil furnaces, talk to our home heating experts at ACS Absolute Comfort. We serve Houston and surrounding communities.

Image via Shutterstock.com

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