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New Furnace Cost, Installation, and Replacement in Columbus, Ohio

Are you considering a furnace installation or replacement? This article will cover how to prepare for your furnace installation, types of systems, and cost.

New Furnace Cost, Installation, and Replacement in Columbus, Ohio

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Joshua Rodriguez


February 2nd, 2024

Delivering unpleasant news to homeowners is something we’d prefer to avoid, but there are times when honesty is essential, no matter how bad the news is. For instance, the cost of a particular furnace repair may run thousands of dollars, so purchasing a new unit could be more cost-effective. 

Investing in a new furnace will provide you, your home, and your loved ones with a reliable heating solution. On average, furnaces last 15-20 years; however, depending on how often you maintain and service your equipment, it could be less.  

The people in our community have been incredibly supportive, and because of this, we've made it a priority to reciprocate their trust. At Fire & Ice, we have almost two decades of experience in the heating and air conditioning industry, and we take pride in serving residential homeowners in Columbus, Ohio. 

That said, when it comes to furnace installations, whether electric or gas, we adhere to high standards and ensure the job is done correctly. To help shed some light on furnace installations, we’d like to share some fundamental information about furnaces to help you make a well-informed decision when the time arises. 

Let's jump in! 

How Much Does a Furnace Cost in Columbus, Ohio? 

On average, a new furnace will cost $3,000 - $8,400 in the Columbus, Ohio area. 

This price depends upon the size of your home, your new furnace's efficiency, and the equipment's complexity. It also covers many residences ranging from 1,200 to over 5,000 square feet. It also covers all three system types, including standard and high-efficiency models. 

At Fire & Ice, we include labor and permit fees in the overall cost of the equipment. Bear in mind this price excludes ductwork modifications, ventilation alterations, or additional indoor air quality products since these may only be necessary for some installation. 

Before you make your decision, we advise you to use our HVAC Contractor Checklist (which you can download for free below) to ensure you pick an HVAC contractor that follows the strict guidelines when installing or replacing a furnace. 

Proper installation plays a pivotal role in either guaranteeing or jeopardizing the efficiency and lifespan of your HVAC system. An inferior installation can result in unnecessary and costly repairs, as well as a sustained decline in energy efficiency over time. 

Preparing for Your Furnace Installation 

Believe it or not, the MOST important day of a furnace's life is the day it’s installed. 

The best HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning) practices start when you call for your initial estimate and meet your residential sales professional. A good salesperson should listen to your problems or concerns and will take the time to answer any questions you may have.  

Manual J Load Calculations

After your questions have been answered, the salesperson should perform a Manual J Load Calculation. This involves taking various measurements related to your home's characteristics, including factors like insulation quality and the size, number, and condition of your windows.  

Why is this important? Each of these measurements helps determine the appropriate furnace size and capacity for your specific needs. A bad installation can lead to short cycling, increased energy bills, a lower lifespan of your system, and decreased comfort. 

Ductwork Inspection 

In addition to the Manual J Load Calculation, your comfort specialist should check to make sure the ductwork is up to par and able to accommodate a new system. Best practices include measuring the area where the new furnace will be installed to ensure a perfect fit.  

It's crucial to communicate all this information to the installer. Many issues homeowners face with their furnaces stem not from natural wear and tear but from incorrect installation practices. In fact, over 70% of HVAC systems are installed incorrectly. Starting off on the right foot with your trusted HVAC contractor is the best way to avoid long-term problems. 

Understanding Furnace Efficiency Ratings 

A furnace’s energy efficiency is determined by its Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) and is measured on a scale of up to 100%. 

In a perfect world, we would all have a 100% efficient gas furnace that produces zero waste. However, this is not the case. A clever way to think of a furnace’s AFUE is to compare it to a car's gas mileage. As a general rule of thumb, the higher your system AFUE, the more “mileage” per dollar you get out of your furnace.  

A close up of a speedometer on a carImage Source: Aleksandr

Let’s look at the different AFUE rating levels a furnace may have. 

AFUE Rating Levels: 

A standard furnace operates at an efficiency level of 80%, and as of January 1, 2015, all new furnaces in the United States are required to have a minimum AFUE of at least 80%

High-efficiency furnaces are generally between 90%-98% efficient. However, it’s important to remember that a higher-efficiency model costs more than a standard one. Therefore, if you plan to stay in your home for 15 years or more, you’re more likely to get a return on your investment.  

Electric Furnaces 

Now, if you’re looking for a better furnace with a 100% AFUE, you should consider an electric furnace. An electric furnace has environmental advantages over low-efficiency furnaces.  

A person holding a smart phone with energy efficiency levels on itImage Source: Canva


However, because of the price of electricity compared to the increased price of natural gas, this doesn’t always translate to utility cost savings, mainly because gas burns hotter than the heat generated by an electric furnace. 

Next, we need to examine furnaces by how many “stages” they have. 

Choosing the Right Furnace  

Within the world of HVAC, there are three types of furnaces: single-stage, two-stage, and variable-speed (or modulating). 

A graphic showing the differences between a single-stage, two-stage, and variable speed HVAC system

Each of these furnace types has unique advantages and drawbacks, making them suitable for different scenarios and preferences. Let's go over the pros and cons of each: 


A standard, single-stage furnace has two settings: 100% on and 100% off. These furnaces are budget-friendly but may be less precise in temperature control. 


  • Cost-effective
  • More efficient than previous equipment 


  • Inconsistent temperatures
  • Loss of energy 


A two-stage furnace introduces an additional setting, which operates around 60% to 75% of its maximum heating capacity 80% of the time- making this type of furnace strike a balance between comfort and cost.  


  • Increased energy savings
  • Steady temperatures 
  • Quieter operations  
  • Better indoor air quality


  • Higher cost  
  • Moderate repair expenses 

Variable (or modulating) Speed 

Variable-speed or modulating furnaces offer the highest comfort and energy efficiency level but come at a higher initial investment. It offers homeowners a range of settings, with the lowest stage typically operating at around 35% of the unit's maximum output 85% of the time.


  • Increased energy efficiency  
  • Lower sound level 
  • Greater indoor air quality  
  • Better comfort and control 
  • Great for zoning  
  • Extended reliability  


  • Initial cost  
  • Costly repairs/maintenance  

Nevertheless, when choosing a furnace, you should also consider the climate you live in, your overall usage patterns, and how long you plan to stay in your home. Ultimately, the choice of furnace type depends on your home's needs, preferences, and, most importantly, your budget. 

New Furnace Installation and Replacement in Columbus, Ohio 

Unfortunately, when buying a new furnace, there isn’t a “one-size-fits-all” option; this is especially true because HVAC brands have differing standards. However, a good conversation with a knowledgeable HVAC contractor can help answer any remaining questions.  

A person placing a wooden block in the shape of a houseImage Source: Canva

So now there’s another choice: which HVAC contractor will you partner with? The good HVAC with the appropriate unit and execute the installation to meticulous standards. A great one will go above and beyond to ensure your home comfort while saving you time, money, and unwanted headaches.  

What’s Next? 

Now that you know the basics of a new furnace installation or replacement, read our Cutting Corners: A Look at the Best and Worst HVAC Company Practices in Columbus, OH, article to ensure you’re making the best choice for you, your home, and your loved ones.  

If you’re ready to flip the switch on a new or replacement HVAC system, we should talk. Contact us so one of our expert installers can help you find the right choices for your home.

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