The fundamental principles of how a furnace works don’t change, even though the specifics may change. Understanding your furnace can help you solve problems. The specifics depend on the sort of heat fuel or furnace you use. Additionally, being knowledgeable about your furnace makes you a wise homeowner and aids in problem-solving. We will use a gas-powered forced air heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system as an example in the discussion that follows. Here is everything you need to know about how a furnace operates, without further ado.
Components And Uses Of Furnaces
Knowing a little bit about the furnace’s components can help you comprehend how a furnace operates in the beginning. A heat exchanger, burner, ductwork, plenum, blower, and flue or vent pipe are components found in every furnace. Some furnaces also come with an air conditioner that provides cooling during the summer.
The burner is where the heating process starts. The burner activates when the temperature decreases to a level where the furnace must run. Thus, the gas is transported to the heat exchanger. Your thermostat regulates the burner, for comparison. Your furnace has one burner or two burners, depending on the size of your house (which heat larger volumes of air).
The heat exchanger then takes in air and converts the gas and air into heat, which eventually travels through the ducting in your home. The result is combustion. When fuel and air are combined, they ignite, causing combustion, which produces heat. Finally, the heated air enters the blower-equipped air distribution system.
How Your Home Is Heated By The Furnace
Through a different vent, outside air enters the system as the combustion process is taking place. Heat is mixed with the outside air. The air then warms to the proper temperature and is distributed via the ducting throughout the house. Filtration is necessary for this brand-new, pure outdoor air, though. The result is that dust and debris are eliminated during the filtration process before being stored in the plenum of the furnace.
The furnace’s blower then kicks on and starts to blow hot air through your ductwork or ventilation system. The furnace will blast hot air when you need it if the blower is clean and in good functioning order. The air distribution system continues to be in charge of regulating the air temperature to the thermostat setting.
Your furnace’s flue and vent pipe are in charge of maintaining healthy indoor air quality. It accomplishes this by venting toxic combustion byproducts like carbon monoxide and other poisonous pollutants outside your house. To prevent a backup of this potentially deadly exhaust into your home, the flue opens and shuts as necessary.
The HVAC system’s ductwork also enables hot air to be dispersed throughout your house. To promote maximum air circulation, keep ducts clean and clear of obstructions or trash. The air filter in the furnace also helps to clean and cleanse the air as it circulates. This is crucial for the upkeep of your HVAC system and reduces airborne allergens and odors. Additionally, this lessens the need for vacuuming and dusting in your home.
This process ends when the temperature in your home reaches the preset level and doesn’t resume until the next time heat is needed.
Some furnaces include a humidifier installed that replenishes moisture in the hot air before it travels down the ductwork. This contributes to the improvement of the atmosphere.
Heating And Cooling
When a furnace has an air conditioner attached, the cooling process starts when the air conditioner turns on. It initially turns on the evaporator coil in the air conditioner, which cools and dehumidifies the air. The excess moisture is then transferred to a floor drain in your house through the condensate line. The compressor then moves a refrigerant through the evaporator coil to release heat outside. After cooling, this air returns to your furnace unit where it is conditioned and given humidity.
Homeowners can avoid a frequent problem by choosing the right-sized furnace. When a furnace is installed in an area that is too small for it, it will short cycle, resulting in greater damage to the appliance and spikes in electricity. In cold weather, a furnace that is too small for the room would run continuously, using more energy and ultimately costing more.
A skilled HVAC specialist can assist you in choosing the ideal furnace for your home and maintaining it in top working order.