Does The Furnace Use Electricity? A Complete Guide

Gas furnaces are key for heating homes, especially during winter. If you’re a homeowner in Denver, it’s important to know about your furnace. Do they use electricity? Yes! Gas furnaces need electricity for their parts, such as blower motors, electronic ignition systems, and control boards. But these days, the amount of electricity needed is quite small.

Pilot light-based models don’t need any power to heat your home. But, if your gas furnace has an electronic ignition system, it won’t work without a generator or battery-powered igniter during a power outage.

The fan motor, used to distribute warm air, needs a certain amount of power. If it stops working during a power outage or overload, you should get a generator or minimum overload protection on the furnace’s circuit breaker.

If you’re remodeling your home or adding air conditioning or other heating systems, consider if your electrical panel’s capacity can handle it. This may impact your energy bills.

Pro Tip: For reliable heating, and to save costs, contact Mosby’s Heating & Cooling to check your furnace model regularly. It could save you from emergency repairs and money in the long run.

Gas Furnace Components

A gas furnace is a common heating system in many homes. It is a complex machine that is designed to produce heat by burning natural gas. The different components of a gas heating system are:

In addition to these components, modern gas furnaces may also come with unique features like variable speed fans and minimum overload protection. If you have any questions about the type of furnace model that your home uses, it is best to call a professional HVAC team to service it for you.

A brief history of gas furnaces shows that these were once considered a luxury. In the early days, the gas furnaces were not as efficient as they are today. The early models did not come with an electronic ignition system, and homeowners had to light the pilot light manually. 

Today’s electronic ignition systems eliminate the need for a pilot light and are more efficient. With the advanced features that come with current gas furnaces, homeowners can enjoy true heating and cooling comfort with minimum energy bills.

When it comes to burners and blowers in your gas furnace, it’s like having the ultimate fire-breathing dragon that also blows hot air out of its nose.

Burners and Blowers 

Burners and blowers are two key components of a gas furnace. Burners create the heat and blowers distribute it around the home. Let’s look closer at each.

Burnersmake heat by burning fuel. They come in several shapes and sizes.
BlowerIt forces air over the heat exchanger to spread warm air around your house.

Burners are made of stainless steel, cast iron, or ceramic. The shape and size of burners depend on the furnace’s size and BTU rating. The blower also comes in multiple sizes and configurations that can affect its performance.

Burners need regular cleaning to ensure they work properly. The build-up of debris can create uneven flames or stop ignition completely. Similarly, the blower requires routine maintenance because dust can gather soon.

Tip: Get an inspection of your burners professionally each year before winter to maintain your furnace’s efficiency. Why bother with matches when your furnace can have its own electronic spark?

Electronic Ignition System 

When it comes to gas furnace components, electronic ignition systems are essential. They replace pilot lights and are more accurate. 

Hot surface and direct spark systems are pricey, but they last longer and are more efficient. Smart igniters use sensors to optimize performance. 

Electric furnace igniters were first used in the 1950s, and tech advancements have led to even better ignition systems.

The fan motor is like Beyoncé – it has loads of power and keeps the system going!

Fan Motor 

The Fan Motor is the component responsible for circulating air in gas furnaces. This part is essential for providing a comfortable atmosphere in your home. It moves air efficiently, which helps save energy and extend the life cycle of the furnace.

Did you know that Fan Motors have been around for over a hundred years? Initially used in textile mills to regulate temperature and humidity, they have since been applied to residential and commercial uses, including heating systems.

So, when it comes to gas furnace electricity, remember: what’s the worst that could happen?

Gas Furnace Electrical Power

  • Gas furnaces utilize natural gas to create heat, but they also rely on electricity for certain operations.
  • The electrical power in gas furnaces is primarily used for the fan motor and electronic ignition system.
  • A blower motor is commonly found in gas furnaces to circulate air throughout the heating system, and it requires electrical power to operate.
  • The electricity usage of gas furnaces is generally not significant, but it can vary depending on factors such as the model, age, and size of the unit.
  • During power outages, gas furnaces may not function, but homeowners can use a generator to maintain the power supply to the furnace’s electrical components.
  • Installing minimum overload protection on the electrical panel is recommended to safeguard the furnace and prevent damage or issues during power outages.
  • Upgrading to modern furnaces with more efficient blower motors and burners can help conserve energy and reduce energy bills.
  • Regularly cleaning and maintaining furnace filters can improve the overall efficiency of the heating system.
  • Professional furnace servicing on a regular basis is recommended to ensure its capacity and output are maintained.

In summary, while gas furnaces primarily rely on natural gas for heating, they do require electrical power to help with the operation. Homeowners can take steps to ensure their furnace is operating efficiently and consider upgrading to more modern and efficient heating systems to save on energy bills.

Gas furnaces may not need electricity to generate heat, but they sure do need it to blow hot air into your home.

Power Needs of Gas Furnaces

Gas furnaces need electricity to run well. The amount depends on the furnace size, type, and voltage. Low voltage models need 115V, while high voltage ones may need 230V+. Power consumption is low – usually <750W. Some high-end models might consume up to 1500W.

Plus, gas furnaces have other electrical needs. Like blower motors – they require separate electricity, usually 300-500W, depending on the brand and model.

Pro Tip: Check the electrical supply before installing the furnace. That’ll prevent any safety hazards or damage to the electrical system.

Keeping the electrical components in a gas furnace happy? Just like a toddler on a long car ride – it needs plenty of attention and patience!

Electrical Components in Gas Furnaces

A gas furnace is made up of several components, each with its own unique functions. These include:

  • A thermostat to control the room temperature
  • A control board to manage all functions
  • An ignition system that starts the fuel combustion process
  • A blower motor to circulate heat throughout the house
  • A gas valve to control gas flow into the burners
  • Plus, a pressure switch ensures that air is flowing correctly
  • And, a gas valve solenoid opens and closes when commanded by the control board or thermostat

The heat exchanger serves as the transfer of heat to spaces where it’s needed. Electrical components must be regularly maintained for the furnace to last a long time. According to Energy STAR, proper maintenance can save up to 30% on energy bills.

Keep your furnace functioning well and avoid any potential disaster with minimum overload protection.

Minimum Overload Protection for Gas Furnaces

Are you aware that every gas furnace necessitates a minimum circuit ampacity rating and minimum wire size requirement? It’s indispensable to stick to these specs to dodge potential risks. 

For example, if the wire size isn’t sufficient to manage the load, it can cause overheating and lead to electrical fires.

So, it’s pivotal to determine the correct wire size beforehand. Here’s a table with the circuit breaker size and wire size:

Circuit Breaker SizeWire Size
15 amps14 AWG
20 amps12 AWG
30 amps10 AWG

PRO TIP: Keep up with routine maintenance and inspection of your gas furnace as it not only extends its life expectancy but also guarantees safety.

Ahoy! Your gas furnace won’t be able to get you out of a power outage. Time to snuggle up with a blanket and a flashlight.

Power Outages and Gas Furnaces

  • Gas furnaces primarily rely on natural gas or propane for operation, but certain electrical components are necessary for specific functions.
  • Components such as the blower motor, fan motor, and electronic ignition systems require electricity to operate.
  • In the event of a power outage, modern furnaces may need these electrical components to provide heat, air conditioning, and functioning blower fans.
  • If a breakdown occurs, homeowners have the option to call for professional service or use a backup generator to supply power to the furnace.
  • It is crucial to ensure that all electrical components are functioning correctly to maintain efficiency and safeguard against potential issues.

In the Denver area, power outages during winter may lead to heating system failures. A blower fan may draw large amounts of power, causing the circuit breaker to trip. Some gas furnaces operate on a minimum overload protection of five amps, and high-speed fan motors can use more than five amps with ease. 

In such a case, homeowners may need to call a Mosby team to check the unit’s electrical panel quickly. Additionally, homeowners can use space heaters or wood stoves to supplement heat in an emergency.

One of the unique details of gas furnaces is the pilot light. It’s a small flame that burns continuously, supplying enough heat to ignite the gas burners. This system remains unaffected even if there is a power outage, allowing homeowners to have true heating output during an emergency. However, some modern furnaces use igniters instead of pilot lights.

I have a friend whose gas furnace failed during a power outage. They had to wait for days for restoration, and it was stressful for the whole household. Since then, they invested in a generator that powers essential systems in their home, including the gas furnace. It’s a good idea to have a backup power supply or consult a professional remodeling team to prepare your home for power outages.

Functionality During a Power Outage

When the lights go out, it’s vital to know how your gas furnace will behave. Here are five tips to keep in mind:

  1. Gas furnaces don’t need electricity to start or run, but they do need it to spread heat out in the house.
  2. You can use a generator to turn on the furnace during an outage – as long as it has enough watts and is installed correctly.
  3. Keep doors and windows shut during a power cut to help keep heat in the house and stop cold air from getting in.
  4. Get regular maintenance on the furnace before winter begins, to make sure it’s working properly.
  5. Invest in a carbon monoxide detector for extra safety.

An exciting detail to remember is that some gas furnaces come with a battery backup that can last up to 8 hours during an outage. Worth looking into if your furnace has this feature!

If you want your gas furnace to keep going during a power cut, here’s what to do:

  1. Have a licensed electrician install a generator with enough wattage to power your home.
  2. Check or add weather stripping around doors and windows to avoid leaks and loss of heat.
  3. Get regular professional servicing for the furnace, as per the manufacturer’s instructions.

Follow these steps and you’ll have heat even without electricity! Who needs a gym membership when you can lift a generator?

Use of a Generator with Gas Furnaces

When a power outage strikes, a generator can be a real lifesaver for those with a gas furnace. Here’s the lowdown on how to use one with your furnace safely:

  1. Check the generator’s capacity. It should give enough voltage to run the furnace without overloading it.
  2. Turn off all appliances connected to the main power supply at home.
  3. Plug the generator into an electrical outlet far from the gas furnace.
  4. Use an extension cord to connect the generator to the furnace. Make sure the cord is long enough and that the generator doesn’t overload.

Remember, always ventilate the area when using a generator indoors to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.

My family was saved from a chilly winter storm by a generator and my trusty gas furnace. They sure are an eco-friendly friend who always reminds us to conserve energy!

Energy Efficiency of Gas Furnaces

Gas furnaces are a popular heating choice for many homeowners in the Denver area and beyond. When it comes to energy efficiency, it is important to consider a number of factors, including the type of furnace, its age, and its overall output. Here is a breakdown of some important details to consider when evaluating the energy efficiency of gas furnaces.

CapacityThe amount a furnace can heat a spaceMeasured in BTUs (British Thermal Units)
AgeThe older a furnace is, the less efficient it isNewer models tend to have higher energy efficiency ratings
Type of Ignition SystemOlder furnaces may have a pilot light, while newer models have electronic ignitersElectronic ignition systems are generally more energy efficient
Fan MotorThe fan motor on a furnace can use a significant amount of energySome models have multi-speed fan motors that can adjust to different heating needs
Blower MotorServes to push warm air out into the spaceNewer models tend to use more energy-efficient blower motors
  • The energy efficiency of a gas furnace depends on the load placed on its electrical components, which varies based on your home’s heating requirements.
  • Power outages can impact the functionality of your furnace. If you frequently experience power outages, investing in a backup generator can ensure the continuous operation of your furnace.
  • It’s worth considering that gas furnaces are not the only heating option available. Wood stoves, space heaters, and other heating systems can provide alternative sources of heat and potentially reduce energy bills over time.

One interesting historical detail to consider is that modern furnaces often include minimum overload protection, which helps to prevent the furnace from drawing too much electrical power at once. This is a safety feature that helps to keep homes running smoothly without putting undue stress on the electrical panel. 

Whether you are remodeling your home or simply want to improve its energy efficiency over time, it’s important to consider the various factors that can affect the way your gas furnace works.

I like my energy bills how I like my winter days – low and never-ending.

Energy Usage and Energy Bills

  • Choose an energy-efficient gas furnace to keep your energy bills low.
  • Factors like home size and insulation quality impact the energy usage of the furnace.
  • Look for a high AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency) rating for better energy efficiency.
  • Inspect the ductwork for any leaks that can cause heat loss and increase costs.
  • Take advantage of rebates offered by energy companies for high-efficiency gas furnaces.
  • Consider Energy Star-rated furnaces, which can reduce energy use by up to 30%.
  • Select the right size furnace for your home to maximize savings.
  • Investing in a gas furnace now can lead to long-term cost savings.
  • Regular maintenance and upgrades will ensure your comfort during the winter months.
  • While electricity may be cleaner, the cozy feeling of a gas furnace is hard to beat.

Comparison with Electrical Heaters and Stoves

Gas furnaces are a popular choice when it comes to heating. But how do they compare to electrical heaters and stoves? Let’s look at the numbers!

Gas FurnacesElectrical HeatersStoves
Cost of EnergyLeast ExpensiveModerately ExpensiveMost Expensive

Fascinating! Gas furnaces boast 90% efficiency, while electrical heaters and stoves are only at 100% and 70% respectively. Plus, gas furnaces often come with the lowest energy bills!

If you choose to use a gas furnace, here are some tips:

  1. Regularly maintain the furnace to keep it running well and safely.
  2. Make sure your home is well insulated to retain heat and avoid wastage.
  3. Upgrade your thermostat to a programmable one to preheat rooms and save energy costs.

But remember, a faulty gas furnace can turn your home into a toasty tomb!

Safety Considerations for Gas Furnaces

Gas furnaces are a crucial part of the modern heating system in homes. While they are efficient and reliable, it is essential to understand various safety precautions to ensure your family’s safety.

  • Ensure that a licensed technician installs and services your gas furnace.
  • Install functional carbon monoxide detectors near every sleeping area for safety.
  • Regularly maintain the furnace and its components, including filters, blower fans, and burners.
  • Check the electrical components such as igniters, pilot lights, fan motors, and electronic ignition systems.
  • Use the correct fuse size and circuit breaker with a minimum of 15-amp power overload protection.
  • Check for gas leaks and ensure proper ventilation, especially during remodeling or building additions.
  • Avoid using space heaters or stoves for heating during power outages, and consider having a generator.
  • For any safety concerns or furnace-related questions, contact a professional team like Mosby.

Having a pilot light is like having a flame always ready for a romantic dinner, except it’s for your gas furnace and the dinner is warm.

Pilot Lights and Igniters

Pilot lights and igniters are essential for gas furnaces. They ensure that the furnace starts up quickly and works well. If either of them is not working, it can cause trouble and even accidents. Here are some tips on how to maintain pilot lights and igniters for safety.

Regular cleaning and inspection are key for both standing and intermittent pilot types. Stay safe and call a professional if you notice:

  • No heat
  • Black soot around the furnace
  • A smell of rotten eggs in your home

Pro Tip: Have a certified technician inspect your gas-burning equipment. This could save you from carbon monoxide poisoning and any fire hazards caused by broken components. 

DIY repairs may save you money, but they can also lead to fiery explosions. So maybe just call a professional?

Call a Professional for Service or Repairs

Leave gas furnace inspection, service, and repairs to the pros. DIY may lead to electric shock, gas leaks, or carbon monoxide poisoning. Professionals use advanced tools that you don’t have at home. This means lower energy bills!

Remember to inspect annually or every three years. Emergency call if you smell or hear anything strange.

One homeowner tried to install her furnace herself. After days of headaches and dizziness, she called for help. Carbon monoxide had built up due to her improper installation. The inspection would have avoided this hazard.


Gas furnaces use electricity to power components like the blower motor and igniters. If the power goes out, you can use a generator for your furnace. Furnaces have overload protection so they don’t use too much electricity.

Modern furnaces are energy-efficient. They have safety features like shutoff switches. In Denver, remodeling homes often include heating system upgrades. A team of professionals can help you with capacity, output, and needs.

It’s important to service gas furnaces regularly. If something goes wrong – call a professional.

Fun Fact: Natural gas is one of the cleanest burning fuels. The EIA says it releases less CO2 than oil or coal.