The Difference Between Heaters, Boilers, and Furnaces in Maryville, IL

Whether you are building a new house or want to replace your existing heating system, you can become confused or overwhelmed at your options. It is important that you understand the difference between heaters, boilers, and furnaces, so you can make sure to choose the best heating option for your Maryville, IL home.

What’s the Difference Between a Heater and a Furnace?

furnaces

It’s all in the definition of the word “heater”. Technically, a heater includes any kind of device that provides heat to space. That covers a wide range of devices, including furnaces. So, all furnaces are heaters but not all heaters are furnaces.

The word “furnace” comes from the Greek word for “oven”. Early furnaces were made of stone or clay and used wood or coal to produce intense heat. They were first used as kilns and metal smelting, eventually being adapted for home heating.

What’s the Difference Between Furnaces and Boilers?

According to the definition of the word “heater”, both furnaces and boilers are heaters. What makes them noticeably different is the way they operate.

A furnace uses either an electric resistance or natural gas combustion to produce heat. Goodman Manufacturing is one of the biggest manufacturers of furnaces in the nation, with both gas and electric models. Regardless of how the heat is generated, this heat is then sent to the air by a heat exchanger. It is then distributed throughout your home through a system of ductwork. These forced-air heating systems are extremely efficient and are able to produce a lot of heat quickly. The weak link in the system is the ductwork itself. Leaks can develop, allowing the heat to escape.

boiler

Boilers, on the other hand, work very differently. Instead of moving the air through your home, a boiler burns gas or oil to heat water. The heated water is then distributed through the pipework, heating up the area as it does. Boilers can be used for a variety of purposes, including heating a home and heating the water needed for taking showers, washing dishes, doing laundry, and many other household issues.

Sometimes, furnaces and boilers are used together to heat a home. Steam boilers need a heater, such as a small furnace, to create steam from the water to heat your home. Steam is an excellent medium to transfer the heat where it is most needed in your home.

Armed with this information about heaters, furnaces, and boilers, you can find the right home heating system to keep your home comfortable all winter long.