Tips for Buying a New Furnace for Your Historic Home

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Tips for Buying a New Furnace for Your Historic Home

Many of us love the charm and grandeur of a grand old historical home and all the secrets of past lives and occasions it holds within its walls. Period homes, however, often require a lot of TLC and upgrading. For example, the furnace may be decades old and no longer capable of keeping your home comfortable during Chicagoland’s long winters.

At American Home Heating & Air Conditioning, we’ve been your expert heating and cooling company in Avondale since 1962, and we know the challenges of installing the right furnace in a period home. When making the correct choice for your home, here are some things to consider.

Energy Efficiency

Basically, there are three types of furnaces.

  • High-efficiency – Provide up to 90% energy efficiency
  • Medium-efficiency – Provide 80% to 90% energy efficiency
  • Conventional furnaces – Operate with about 75% to 80% energy efficiency

Generally, high-efficiency systems are used in commercial buildings, and a medium-efficiency furnace will probably be sufficient for your historical home, and a conventional furnace may well fit the needs of a smaller home.


Along with the furnace, the ductwork may be decades old. Since HVAC installation methods and standards are very different now, and older ductwork is prone to leaking and other issues, it’s a good idea to consider customized changes to existing ductwork to ensure compatibility with your new furnace.

Speed options

Older furnaces usually have a one-speed blower. Consider installing a furnace with a two-stage blower for greater efficiency and comfort.

Fuel type

When shopping for a new furnace for your historical home, consider the type of fuel you want the furnace to use. Many older systems used oil, but you may want to switch to natural gas for a more convenient and cost-effective way of heating your home.


You want to preserve the historical flavor of the interior of your home, and luckily, furnaces now come in designs that can fit virtually any interior without sacrificing functionality. Old fireplaces can be modernized for wood-burning, gas or electrical use, and hot water and steam radiators come in new styles that look old.

Whatever your needs, American Home Heating & Air Conditioning is the heating and cooling company to call in Avondale. Our HVAC experts are always ready to find the best modern heating system for your historical home.