Understanding Gas Furnaces
Gas furnaces are quite common on Long Island. And understanding the basics will help you better communicate with your HVAC company if you happen to own one. In this article, we’ll explain how gas furnaces work.
Although manufacturers designs vary, all furnaces have the same essential components:
- The control system (thermostat and electrical controls)
- Gas valve
- Heat exchanger
- Duct and ventilation system
- Flue pipe
Your furnace will turn on when it receives a signal from your home’s thermostat. When it sends its electronic message to the furnace, the gas valve opens and ignites the burner below the combustion chamber. This valve works in conjunction with the thermostat to regulate the amount of gas that enters your furnace.
From there, the flames from the burner heat a metal component called a heat exchanger (please see important note below). The generated heat circulates through looped tubes of a heat exchanger, transferring the heat to the air.
As heat circulates through the heat exchanger, a blower motor and fan move it through a plenum. From there, it flows through the ductwork in your home. The ductwork leads to vents that allow heat to enter individual rooms.
While all of this is going on, exhaust from the combustion process exits your home via a flue pipe.
Proper Furnace Maintenance is Essential.
Proper maintenance is critical for the efficient function of your furnace. And now is a great time to schedule an inspection and tune-up with a qualified HVAC technician before temperatures drop further.
Beware of Damaged Heat Exhangers!
The heat exchanger is a critical part of your system, and if this component is cracked or damaged, it can lead to a health hazard —read more here.
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