Your furnace keeps your house warm during the winter. It’s definitely a necessity in our cold Edmonton winters. You trust that your furnace is going to keep you and your family warm in the coming months, but did you know these facts about your furnace?


When Did the Furnace Originate?

The furnace is actually over 1200 years old, making it one of our oldest pieces of technology. The method of pumping hot air through walls and floors was actually developed by the Romans in ancient times. This method was later forgotten and revived by monks who used hot water, heated by furnaces, to warm their monasteries.


The Modern Furnace

Furnaces are the most common heating system we use today. They work by sending hot air around your house through ducts along the walls, floors, and ceiling. Today, your furnace may be run by electricity, oil, or natural gas. Gas furnaces are, however, the most common, because they have a higher energy efficiency and lessen your energy bill.


Furnace Parts

Did you know there are only 3 parts of the furnace that do the actual heating?

  • The burner – which produces the actual heat.
  • The heat exchanger – which separates the breathable air from the rest.
  • The blower – which circulates the breathable air in the air ducts.

While all the parts of the furnace are necessary, these three parts are what a furnace is typically composed of.


Prevent Pipes from freezing

The risk of freezing pipes is a reality in Edmonton, where we spend much of the year in sub-zero temperatures. Without a furnace your pipes are much more likely to freeze and burst, leaving you with running water everywhere and a costly mess to clean up. Pipes along exterior walls are especially at risk.


What is the Stack Effect?

The stack effect refers to how air moves through a building, specifically how heat rises in buildings. In cold weather, warm indoor air is much less dense than the cooler outdoor air. This warm air wants to rise up and out of the building. The warm air rising causes cold air to be drawn into your house through cracks and openings near the bottom of the house. This is why your basement is always so much colder


You can Feel the Same Temperature Differently

The humidity in your home will affect the way you feel temperature. If your home has a high humidity, it will feel warmer while a low humidity will cause your home to feel cooler. So humid air feels warmer than dry air. To help with this, you will want to measure your dew point to discover how humid your air is and help control your temperature. Learn how to measure your dew point.


There are Different Ways to Vent

There are actually 3 different ways to vent your furnace: natural ventilation, direct ventilation, and sidewall power vent. Natural ventilation tends to be the most common because it works with most varieties of furnaces and is cost effective. If you want to learn more about the pros and cons of the different venting systems click here.


Yes, Your Furnace Requires Maintenance

While furnaces can last a long time (as little as 15 years or up to 20 years for high efficiency or 25 years for mid-efficiency) they require regular maintenance in order to keep them running. You can extend your furnace’s lifetime by having regular inspections and doing regular maintenance.


Furnace Replacement is Unavoidable

While regular maintenance can lengthen the life of your furnace, it will not keep it running forever. Ultimately, furnace replacement is unavoidable. Be sure to replace your furnace when it is at the end of its life cycle and have your new furnace installed by a professional.


At Max Heating and Air Conditioning we want your furnace to keep you warm as long as possible. Book an appointment today to have your furnace inspected.