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Your Quick Guide To Electric Furnaces Vs. Gas Furnaces

Many people know that gas furnaces and electric furnaces are differing systems, but knowledge beyond this basic precept often becomes a bit hazy. To learn more about these two different types of furnaces, follow along. We’ve organized a quick guide to get you up to speed on some of the primary differences between the two.

Method of Function

These two types of furnaces use some very different methods to produce heat. Gas furnaces actually use a controlled burning process that incinerates incoming natural gas or propane and then pushes the resulting heat into your home. On the other hand, there is no burning process involved with electric furnaces. In electric systems, electricity is manipulated to create heat via controlled electrical resistance, much like you might see taking place in a toaster or conventional oven.


In terms of efficiency, electric furnaces have the potential to reach an annual fuel-utilization-efficiency (AFUE) rating as high as 100%. Gas furnaces can only reach an AFUE rating of about 97% at best. However, this is assuming that you’re running the very best system that each has to offer. A low-end, low-efficiency electric furnace, for example, will not outperform the efficiency of a higher-quality gas furnace.

Maintenance Aspects

With regard to concerns for ongoing maintenance, each type of system has its individual advantages and disadvantages. However, in general, gas furnaces require more ongoing maintenance in order to ensure safe and proper operation. This is because of the many components that control and burn incoming gases for heat.

Overall Efficacy

When you look at overall efficacy in determining which type of furnace is better, both kinds can effectively heat homes and offices of all shapes and sizes. They both generate enough heat to warm your home in the coldest of climates. When you go on to include the above-mentioned considerations of efficiency and ongoing maintenance requirements, though, the clear winner is the electric furnace.

For over 45 years, Loren’s Heating & Air has been your number-one source of HVAC service and installation work for the Salem region. We specialize in the complete range of heating and air services, including system repairs, upgrades, new installations, expert consultation, and system analyses, and more. If you need your system worked on or are simply in need of expert advice, don’t delay. Call us today.

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