Tuckers Air Conditioning, Heating & Plumbing Blog: Posts Tagged ‘Gas Furnace’

Choosing Between Electric vs. Gas Furnaces

Monday, January 18th, 2021

You know that wintertime would be much tougher without the help of your heating system. So when that heating system gives out, it isn’t the time to be hemming and hawing online over which new unit will be the best fit. If your heater is getting close to its retirement, it is a good idea to plan ahead for what you want your next system to be.

Chances are that you may be considering a furnace but this can actually be a bigger choice than you think. You will want to consider selecting the best option between an electric or gas furnace in Jefferson, MD. Both options are great heating systems–the important part is selecting the one that meets your needs best.

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Types of Ignition for Gas Furnaces

Wednesday, February 18th, 2015

Igniting a furnace is a process for your heating system, and the reason it is a process is to ensure safety while the fuel is released and lit. Technology has helped improve the ignition process over the years, and the result is that there are two main types of ignition for gas (and other combustion) furnaces.

First Type: Standing Pilot

Standing pilot ignition is the oldest type of ignition, and furnaces aren’t manufactured with this type of ignition anymore. We’ll explain why, but let’s first take a look at how a standing pilot works. As you can tell from the name, the standing pilot is a pilot light that stays lit continuously. To make sure the pilot is always lit, a furnace with a standing pilot has a small, dedicated gas valve that always has gas flowing; it also has a small component called a thermocouple that monitors the pilot light to make sure it is lit and viable. When the thermostat calls for heat, the thermocouple checks the pilot light, and if all is well, the thermocouple allows the main gas line to open so that the standing pilot can light the burner. So why aren’t standing pilot ignition systems part of today’s furnaces? Furnaces operate in cycles, so having a dedicated gas line open continuously can be a big waste of fuel, which is why this type of ignition is no longer used by manufacturers.

Second Type: Electronic Ignition

Today’s furnaces are equipped with an electronic ignition system, and there are two types of electronic ignition: intermittent pilot and hot surface ignition. While both types are used, hot surface ignition is installed more often than intermittent pilot.

The two ignitions achieve the same goal of lighting your furnace’s burner, but each does it differently. An intermittent pilot uses a pilot light that is lit only when your thermostat calls for heat. A dedicated small gas line is lit with an electronic spark and then the burner is lit. With a hot surface igniter, a small metal probe heats via electricity, and when the igniter becomes hot enough, it ignites the gas inside the burner.

It isn’t unusual to experience a problem with the ignition in your gas furnace, but it is never a good idea to try and repair these problems on your own. The experts at Tuckers Air Conditioning, Heating & Plumbing can help you service your gas furnace in the Rockville area, so call us at the first sign of problems. Give us a call today!

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Heating Tip: Components of a Gas Furnace

Monday, March 3rd, 2014

Gas furnaces remain the go-to option for many household heating systems, providing cheap reliable heat to keep your home cozy and comfortable. Because it’s such a vital part of the home, and because it periodically requires repair just like any other mechanical system, it pays to know how it all works. Here’s a quick explanation of the components gas furnaces that will help you better understand how they work and when you need to call for repairs.

The heating process starts with an ignition system, which used to be the pilot light in older models, but now usually electronic ignition. The ignition is connected to a thermocouple which regulates the flow of gas into the furnace. When the thermocouple detects that the ignition is activated, it releases the gas. (This is an important safety feature that keeps your home from being flooded with unlit gas.)

The lit gas then moves to the burners, located beneath a heat exchanger which is essentially a long metal tube with openings on either end. The gas burns very hot, and it passes through the heat exchanger, which is warmed by the heat and subsequently passes that heat onto the surrounding air. The toxic byproduct passes safely through the heat exchanger and into a venting pipe, where it safely exists your home.  The heated air around the exchanger is now ready for distribution into your home. A fan or blower then movies it into a series of ducts, which safely distribute it.

Other heating tips on the components of a gas furnace can be provided by the experts at Tuckers Air Conditioning, Heating & Plumbing. If you need heating service in Germantown, MD, call us today to schedule a consultation. You’ll be glad you did!

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