October 20, 2020

As the days in Drexel Hill, PA, get cooler, it’s time to start thinking about how you will keep your home comfortable this winter. If your current furnace is working fine, then you have nothing to worry about. However, if your current furnace seems to be malfunctioning or if your utility bills are higher than you’d like, then it may be time to consider a new approach to heating your home. At O'Brien Heating & Air Conditioning, one solution we recommend is a two-stage furnace. Understanding what sets these devices apart will help you determine if this is the direction you should go for your home comfort needs.

Typical Heating

When you select a temperature on your thermostat, do you know how your furnace works to achieve that temperature? Some people think that a furnace from O'Brien Heating & Air Conditioning changes the temperature of the heat it produces, which is why you’ll see some people turning their furnace way up to “try and heat their home more quickly.” However, your furnace actually produces heat only at one temperature for the duration of each operating cycle. As the concentration of heat increases in your living space, the temperature will rise to your desired setting. This on/off approach, though effective, isn’t exceptionally efficient.

Two-Stage Heating

A two-stage furnace works somewhat similarly to the way that some people think a typical furnace operates. Instead of operating at full blast at all times, a two-stage furnace from O'Brien Heating & Air Conditioning has two stages of heating that it can use depending on the current heating needs. For example, if the exterior temperature is bitterly cold and you want your home a lot warmer than it currently is, then a two-stage furnace will run at full capacity. However, if it’s milder outside and you only have minimal heating needs, then the furnace will only engage its low-power mode to get the job done.

How Does This Help?

The great thing about a low-power mode on a two-stage furnace is that it uses less energy than a typical furnace. Therefore, if a two-stage furnace from O'Brien Heating & Air Conditioning can utilize this mode a majority of the time, then you’re likely to see major energy savings because your furnace isn’t running at maximum capacity to keep your home comfortable. Plus, with heating modes that respond to the current heating needs, you’re less likely to be changing the temperature on the thermostat, allowing the furnace to run more consistently, which also saves energy.

What Are the Differences?

The overall design of two-stage furnaces is fairly similar to a conventional furnace. This means that most homes can accommodate a two-stage furnace, even if they have a cramped mechanical room.

The main difference that you’re likely to notice with a two-stage furnace from O'Brien Heating & Air Conditioning is that the furnace tends to run longer when it’s using its low-power mode. This is because the furnace is using a fraction of the power to heat the air, meaning that it tends to take longer for the furnace to get your home to the desired temperature.

Although this might seem like a downside, it’s actually a perk. Since your furnace will be running for longer, you will have more consistent temperatures in your home, avoiding hot and cold spots that commonly develop when your furnace only operates for a few minutes at a time. Plus, since the furnace uses much less energy when in low-power mode, you’ll still end up saving a bundle on your utility bill.

The other difference you’ll notice initially is the price. Due to the extra equipment that’s built into a two-stage furnace, they tend to be more expensive than their conventional counterparts. Over the lifetime of a two-stage furnace, though, you will easily recoup the cost of investment in the form of major energy savings.

Keeping You Warm Throughout the Winter

The professional HVAC technicians at O'Brien Heating & Air Conditioning have one goal: to keep you comfortable. That’s been our goal since we got our start in 1955. Since then, we have expanded thanks to the countless satisfied customers around Drexel Hill who have trusted in our services that include heating and cooling repair, maintenance, and installation, water heater installation, air quality equipment installation, duct cleaning, and insulation installation. As a Better Business Bureau accredited business with hundreds of five-star reviews, you can trust us to take your needs seriously and to provide you with a great experience, every time. If you are interested in learning more about two-stage heating, give us a call at O'Brien Heating & Air Conditioning today.

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