Every homeowner looks forward to a warm evening

Especially during winter. A home furnace provides this much-needed warmth. However, most people hardly pay any attention to how it works until one day, in the dead of winter; they come home to a broken furnace.

Are you one of these people?

Understanding how furnace works helps you to maintain it and troubleshoot issues properly. There are different types of furnaces, but they all primarily operate in the same way. In the guide below you will discover the various components in the furnace, how they work together, and useful tips for maintaining your home furnace.

Components That Make Up A Home Furnace

Burners: Furnace burners are tubes where gas is burned. The burners are fitted with a flame sensor and a gas valve that help control flames and turn off the gas when a flame is not detected.

Heat Exchanger: This component is one of the most vital parts of a home furnace. It is made up of coils where heat is added to the air. The heated air is blown into the ductwork by a blower motor.

Ductwork: This component helps in distributing the heated air throughout your home.

Blower: This component directs air from the return ducts into the heat exchanger. It then directs the heated air into the ductwork. Fans are preset during installation.

Flue: Also referred to as an exhaust stack, a flue gets rid of the toxic remnants of the combustion process.

Thermostat: This furnace element helps you control the temperature to your liking. When it’s turned up, the flames become larger, increasing the temperature. When turned down, the flames grow smaller, lowering the heat.

Heat Pump: This component is mostly fitted in hybrid heating systems.It increases the efficiency of home heating systems and reduces heating bills by up to 30%. During winter, a heat pump works by condensing heat from the outside air and pumping the heat into the home. In the hot months, summer, the heat pump removes the heat from the air in the house and disposes of the hot air outside.

Air Filter: Located near the blower motor, this component removes allergens and pollutants improving the air quality. It also protects the motor. Change the filter regularly to guarantee good quality air.

How The Furnace Warms Your Home

Outside air enters the furnace through a vent. This air is first filtered to remove dust and debris. It is then stored in the plenum, an enclosed space in the furnace. The filtered air is then pushed into the burners where the air is heated. The blower then forces the heated air into the ductwork.

The ductwork distributes the hot air in your home. This process repeats until the heat reaches the required level, then the process stops until heating is needed again. The flue disposes of noxious flames and carbon monoxide that are remnants of the combustion process.

How To Maintain A Home Furnace

A furnace requires regular maintenance to distribute heat efficiently in your home. Here are some tips to help keep the furnace:

  • Inspect and clean the air filter. Inspect all electronic connections.
  • Regularly lubricate moving parts.
  • Check for corrosion on the unit.
  • Check whether the burners are operating correctly.
  • A furnace is an integral part of your home.

The guide above helps you understand how a furnace works, the components, and more importantly how to maintain your home furnace.


Polar Bear Heating & Air has two convenient locations to serve you:

Ashland, KY

Paintsville, KY