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Oil Furnace Replacement & Installation In Montana

A look at oil furnace system in Bonner

Basic oil furnace anatomy. Heat from the combustion process passes through a heat exchanger that heats air for distribution to the living space.

Oil has a long history as a heating fuel, especially in the northeastern U.S. Oil-fired furnaces, often referred to as "oil burners," are widely available, easy to service, and fairly dependable.

The trouble with oil heat is that the price of oil is very volatile. Forces beyond our control (like global demand for petroleum and political instability in oil-producing countries) continue to drive oil prices higher and higher. That's why it's important for an oil furnace to work as efficiently as possible.

An oil furnace that's more than 10 years old can be functioning perfectly but only converting about 65% of the fuel's energy potential into usable heat, the rest goes up the chimney. Newer oil furnaces are available that operate above 90% efficiency. Dr. Energy Saver can evaluate your current heating system and provide a free quote on a super-efficient system that will save you money. Call or email today for a free quote.

Oil furnaces are described in the following ways:

  • BTU output. The heat output of a furnace is listed in thousands of btus (80,000btu, for example) and denotes the amount of heat energy the furnace can produce.
  • Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency. A standard measure of efficiency for furnaces and boilers, AFUE tells you the percentage of input energy the furnace can convert to output energy for warming your home.
  • Configuration. A "high-boy" furnace is a tall model with the blower located under the heat exchanger. A "low-boy" furnace has the blower in back of the heat exchanger, making it shorter.
  • Combustion. "Direct vent," "sealed combustion" and "atmospheric combustion" furnaces are available. Differences between the two types are discussed below.

Conventional "atmospheric" oil furnaces are reliable but inefficient

A standard oil furnace directs heat from combustion through a heat exchanger. A large fan blows air past the heat exchanger and into the supply ducts to be distributed throughout the living space. Return ducts bring cooled air back to the furnace for reheating.

In a conventional "atmospheric" oil furnace, the air supply that makes combustion possible comes from the space surrounding the furnace. Once combustion takes place, hot gases and other combustion byproducts travel through a metal flue to a chimney.

Atmospheric combustion has been used on oil furnaces for many years. But it isn't as efficient as sealed combustion, and it can even be unsafe in a tightly sealed house.

High-efficiency oil furnaces protect homeowners from high oil prices

The risk in keeping an old oil furnace in service is easy to understand. Global demand for petroleum continues to increase. So does political instability in many oil-producing countries. These conditions drive up the price of oil and can make it very expensive to operate a fuel-thirsty furnace. Installing a new, high-efficiency oil furnace is a smart investment these days.

An oil furnace with an Energy Star® rating will have an efficiency rating (AFUE) of at least 85%, and will use up to 33% less fuel than an older, less-efficient oil furnace. These furnaces have improved burners, combustion chambers and heat exchangers, and can sometimes be vented through an exterior wall instead of through a chimney. "Sealed-combustion" oil furnaces feature exterior combustion air supply as well as direct-vent capability.

It's important to understand that just because an oil furnace is new, doesn't mean it's high efficiency. Dr. Energy Saver can ensure you get the highest efficiency furnace available. Since the cost of the oil is far greater during the life of the furnace than the cost of the furnace, it's well-worth it to spend a bit more on a furnace that will use the least oil possible, and send the least heat up your chimney. It's an investment that will pay for itself many times over.

Start Saving Energy and Money With A Furnace Upgrade.

Call 1-888-370-6924 or contact us online to schedule a free home inspection and furnace estimate.

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Serving MT including the Greater Missoula area
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