There are a number of characteristics that homeowners use when selecting a home heating system. Size, fuel type, and AFUE rating are all common factors in making the right decision. When selecting a furnace, however, something is commonly left out. Do you want an upflow furnace or a downflow furnace? Despite not being as well known as the other differentiating factors, this question has a definite impact on the performance of your furnace. Read on to discover the qualities of an upflow furnace, and whether it’s right for you.
Up and Out
Essentially, what makes a furnace upflow or downflow is where it takes in cold air to be heated. An upflow furnace takes in cold air at the bottom of the unit, heating it and circulating it from the top. There are a couple of implications with this kind of furnace, the first being efficiency. Hot air naturally rises, and sinks when it cools. This makes an upflow furnace more efficient, because it is taking advantage of heat’s natural behavior. This will result in heat being more easily distributed throughout your house, requiring less work from the furnace and lowering your heating bills.
The other implication is the location where the furnace needs to be installed. Because of the way upflow furnaces operate, they tend to be installed in basements. This allows them to waste very little heat, as it all rises into the house through the floor. This is also viewed as a more comfortable method of heating. A downflow furnace heats from the top down, which results in much of the warm air becoming trapped in the ceiling where it isn’t much use.
The disadvantage of an upflow furnace is that it isn’t necessarily viable in all homes. Not all homes have basements, especially those on the west coast. This can make proper installation of an upflow furnace more troublesome, perhaps even impossible.
If you are thinking about installing an upflow furnace, call Command A/C. Our heating experts operate throughout the Cypress, CA area. We will find the right furnace for your living space.