How Does Multi-Stage Heating Work?


If you have an old furnace, you might wonder what new furnaces have that could benefit your home’s energy efficiency. Multi-stage heating is an excellent example of an innovation that helps your HVAC system work more effectively.

Single-Stage Heating

When you have a single-stage furnace, you have two options: on and off. Like a light switch, a single-stage furnace either provides full heating power or none at all. This is considered the least expensive and generally the least efficient of furnaces, simply because it is always running full-blast, if it is running at all. Single-stage furnaces can certainly be effective at heating a home even during the coldest winters. However, the inability to tweak the power usage during the milder temperatures of the day leads to lower overall efficiency.

Two-Stage Furnaces

Compared to single-stage furnaces, a furnace with two stages has the option to burn fuel to generate heat at a high or low setting. This allows the furnace to tailor the amount of energy used based on need. Furnaces with more than one stage are ideal for use with programmable thermostats, because then the system can use the benefit of time to gradually increase the heat in the home to the desired temperature. Using less power translates into lower fuel consumption for the same temperature settings, which often turns into decreased energy usage and lower utility bills.

Variable Speed Blowers

If you are thinking about buying a furnace with two or three stages, you should also consider the speed of the blower. The blower motor delivers the heated air to the ductwork and throughout your home. With a variable speed blower, your furnace can increase or decrease the force of the blowing based on how quickly you need to change the temperature in the home. This technology is particularly useful for homes with zone heating or cooling, because it can alter the rate of heated or cooled air cycled throughout various zones of the home. Ask your Ace heating expert about a zone heating system for your home.

Ensuring Top HVAC Efficiency

All HVAC technology requires a sensible use of the system in order to promote the best efficiency. For example, a smart thermostat can only do so much if the user is constantly changing the settings. Similarly, a furnace with multiple stages or a variable speed blower relies on time to change the temperature without using as much energy. However, such a system may not work as well with a manual thermostat, or for a programmable thermostat that does not allow enough time between significant changes in temperature. The system needs you to help it guarantee the level of efficiency you want.

Upgrading your furnace to a new model could mean a much higher level of energy efficiency for the same quality of heating, or better. With multi-stage heating and a variable speed blower, you may discover that you are even more content with your home. Contact us at Ace Plumbing for expert installation and maintenance for your Sacramento HVAC system.