What is the Difference Between a Furnace and a Boiler?

When you’re considering how to save money around your home, learning more about the performance of your home equipment is one of the most effective steps you can take. Many people have a difficult time distinguishing between a boiler and a furnace when reviewing home maintenance tasks. In this new post, we’ll explore the differences between the two systems and what you should know about each system to keep them performing effectively.

One Heats Water, and One Heats Air

The primary difference between a furnace and a boiler is that a boiler heats water, which is then sent throughout the home via the pipe structure to heat the property. A furnace heats air within the system, which is then sent throughout the property’s ducts using a blower.

Unique Maintenance Considerations

Another important element to remember when deciding between a furnace and a boiler for the home is that the two pieces of equipment have unique maintenance considerations. The air filter within your home furnace will need to be cleaned regularly, at least once every few months, to ensure it performs effectively. A boiler meanwhile requires you to bleed the air from the system every few months to ensure optimal air strength and temperature.

The Benefits of Boilers

Let’s examine a few of the benefits boilers can bring to your home.

Lower Operating Cost

While the initial cost to add a boiler to your home will be higher than the purchase cost for a furnace, the operating cost for boilers is significantly lower. You can save up to $500 per year heating your home with a boiler compared to a furnace.

Smaller Footprint

Another clear benefit of using boilers in the home is that they have a lower machine footprint. So, you’ll have more space on the property for other equipment. Boilers can also be mounted to a wall to minimize space requirements.

Simple to Install

For homeowners looking to achieve a quick integration process, a boiler is the optimum choice because it’s simple to install compared with furnaces and other equipment such as heat pumps.

Environmentally Effective

Boilers are often used for the environmental benefits. The system can burn recycled and sustainable fuels.

The Benefits of Furnaces

The following features explain the value a furnace can bring to your home:


Furnaces are available in a range of styles and sizes and can be customized to suit any home.

Faster Heating

While boilers need to fill up a water tank before they can begin their heating process, furnaces can begin heating the home immediately when turned on.

Capitalize on Existing Ductwork

The integration process for a boiler can be costly and may require you to install extra pipes, radiators, and baseboard heaters in the home. Furnaces can simply be added to the home and used immediately with few integration challenges. Our trusted team at Crossfield Heating & Air Conditioning is here to guide you in choosing the right mode of heating for your home. To learn more, call us today.