Furnace vs Fireplace: Which One is More Efficient?

If you want to save money on your heating, then it’s only natural to use the most efficient option possible. However, it can be pretty tough to figure out exactly how efficient furnaces and fireplaces are. Sure, you can look at your energy bill at the end of the month and check your thermostat, but how can you quantify your fireplace’s energy output? To help you pick the right choice for your house this winter, here’s an efficiency comparison from Cleveland’s HVAC experts at KW Lang Mechanical.

What Type of Furnace Is Most Efficient?

There are four types of fuel to consider for this question: gas, electricity, oil, and propane. While that may sound like a lot of options, only two are really competitive when it comes to cost efficiency: gas and electricity. Oil and propane are mainly used when your house doesn’t have access to a natural gas line, or you need a furnace that will work even if there’s an outage. Between electricity and gas, gas tends to be more efficient to run, whereas electric units are cheaper upfront. If you use your heater a lot, then gas will outperform electricity in the long run.

What Type of Fireplace Is Most Efficient?

Like with furnaces, there are several different types of fuel to consider. In the case of fireplaces, the main options are gas and wood. Fortunately, this is pretty straightforward, with gas almost always outperforming wood. If you’ve got a wood-burning fireplace, then it’s not going to stand a chance against a furnace when it comes to efficiency. However, if your fireplace uses gas, then the contest will be quite a bit closer.

Are Furnaces or Fireplaces More Efficient?

When comparing the most efficient options in both categories (gas furnaces and gas fireplaces), it really comes down to what you’re trying to accomplish. If you want to heat a single room, a fireplace is going to do a better job of that. However, if you want to heat multiple rooms, then a furnace will be better. This largely comes down to how heat is lost in the ventilation system when using a furnace, whereas 100% of the heat is delivered to the room in question when using a fireplace. A fireplace won’t be able to transfer heat to other rooms and will likely end up dramatically increasing the temperature in a single room while having a much smaller effect in the rest of the house.

If you’re looking to get a new gas fireplace or furnace, then contact the heating pros at KW Lang Mechanical in Solon. We’ve got rebates and special financing options on approved credit for all your HVAC installation, maintenance, and repair needs. Visit our site or give us a call today to set up your quick and easy appointment.

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