Calgary is a cold, cold place during the winter months. Temperatures can dip down to -30 degrees C in the deepest part of the winters. This makes the need for a good, high quality, working furnace in every Calgary, Alberta home imperative. With a population of well over a million (and closer to 1.1 million) people, the fifth largest metropolitan area in Canada, and over 180 distinct neighborhoods (including inner city and suburban neighborhoods), this means a lot of furnaces need to be in operation in the winter in the city.
Factors Affecting Furnace Prices in Calgary
The average cost for a good furnace in Calgary is between $3,000 and $6,000 on average, including installation.
Note that in Alberta, it is mandatory to do a heat-loss calculation before installing a new furnace, which is also factored into this cost.
Things that affect furnace prices in Calgary include:
- Its brand name (better known brand names tend to cost more)
- Its size and BTU output
- Whether it’s a single stage, stage two, or variable furnace
- How difficult it is for the technician to install
- Whether the homeowner is converting from oil to electric, or gas to propane
- Whether any special upgrades need to be added to the home to accommodate the new furnace
- Whether the furnace is energy efficient
The higher the cost, the more energy efficient the furnace usually is. If the furnace will be working for most of the winter, as it usually will be, it’s important to get a high-efficiency one, since this will significantly cut down on power bills.
The Importance of a High-Efficiency Furnace
With a furnace that isn’t working at maximum efficiency, power bills can go up to stratospheric levels during the winter. It’s much easier on the budgets of most households to pay more up front for a high-efficiency furnace in order to save money on the power bills later. A good energy efficient furnace will more than pay for itself during its first winter of use in the form of saved money with the power company.
ENERGY STAR Certification and Furnaces
To get the best furnace, it is important to look for one with an ENERGY STAR program certification. ENERGY STAR is a government program that identifies energy efficient appliances and certifies them. These are appliances that have proven themselves to genuinely save real money for consumers by using less energy to operate, without compromising on the quality of their performance. ENERGY STAR certification will ensure the consumer is getting the most energy efficient furnace available.
The Power Source for Your Furnace
When it comes to deciding on a power source for your furnace, it all depends on the type of furnace you buy, and what your house is set up to use. If you aren’t pleased with your current power source, you can always convert your house to use another, but it will cost additional money to do so. Sometimes it is worth it, if a different power source will save you money while still giving you good performance from your furnace.
You may use a simple electric-powered furnace, though your power bills are likely to be higher with this type of power. An ENERGY STAR certified furnace will help mitigate this extra expense somewhat. You may also use propane or natural gas, which is often cheaper. What is available to you usually depends on where you live. If you’re in the city or suburbs, there is a natural gas infrastructure operated by Calgary that is available for you to use. Your use of this infrastructure will be reflected on your power bill, and is often less expensive than electricity, particularly with ENERGY STAR certified furnaces. If you are in a rural area, you may need to buy propane to operate your furnace, as you won’t have access to the municipal natural gas supply.
Other Factors to Consider When Purchasing a New furnace for Your Home
Finally, consider your house’s particular and individual needs when shopping for a new furnace. How big of a furnace do you need to adequately heat your whole home? Do you need to make any architectural adjustments to your house before bringing in the new furnace you want, or can you simply get one that is identical to your old one without having to change the structure of our home? Make plans ahead of time before your shop for a new furnace, and you will be sure the buying and installation process is as easy on you and your installation technician as possible, and that you will have a furnace that will serve you well for a long time to come.