Gas Heat

The most common heating system in most new construction and much of the existing housing stock is natural gas heat. This is usually in the form of a forced air furnace with a duct system which distributes heat throughout the house. The use of natural gas for heating purposes appears to be one of the more economic ways to heat a house. With proper equipment and maintenance, such a heating system can be efficient and effective, as well as, a clean and trouble-free component of the home.

The modern gas furnace is a complex piece of equipment with built-in systems to enhance the safety of operation, reduce the likelihood of dangerous conditions and increase the efficiency of operation. It is a system which requires expert installation and maintenance, and one which does not lend itself to homeowner tinkering. Homeowners are encouraged to have all types of gas furnaces serviced every year by a professional gas furnace maintenance company. Such maintenance must include: a check for any small gas leaks, a careful examination of the heat exchanger, a review of the adequacy of an outside air supply, and an examination of the various complex components of the furnace itself. In addition, the furnace and home should be tested for carbon monoxide.

When a gas furnace is installed using an unlined masonry chimney, a common practice in many older homes, the masonry chimney should be lined with a metal liner. This prevents chimney failure, and potential exposure to combustion gases such as carbon monoxide.

Some "high efficiency" gas furnaces don't require a roof mounted chimney. Such furnaces cost more than the medium efficiency units and require a bit more maintenance. By eliminating the need for the old masonry chimney, they can simplify and enhance some remodeling projects.

Heating Your Home