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What's the Difference Between a Boiler and a Furnace?

Delivering Quality Comfort to the Homes and Businesses of Hartford County and New Haven County

It's shocking to think of, but the harsh grip of winter will soon embrace us once again. With that in mind, now is the time to get serious about your home heating system. Sure, it may still be fairly comfortable, if not quite as warm, out there. However, we all know how quickly this can turn. If you are in need of a new heating installation or a heater replacement in West Hartford, CT, now is the time to give us a call. Of course, you cannot have a heater installed in your home if you do not yet know which kind of heater you'd prefer. We get a lot of questions here at Dynamic Mechanical Heating & Air Conditioning, including what the difference is between a boiler and a furnace. Read on, and remember to contact us when you are ready to schedule your heating services.


A furnace is a forced air distribution system. What this means is that a furnace heats air directly, and that this heated air is then distributed throughout one's home via air ducts. Furnaces may run on electricity alone, or they may use combustible fuel, such as natural gas or propane, in order to generate heat. The furnace is perhaps the most common whole-house heating system available today. Many homeowners prefer the use of a furnace due to the swift heating performance that they offer.


Boilers, unlike furnaces, do not heat air and then distribute it throughout a house. Instead, boilers heat water. The resulting hot water or, in some cases, steam, then serves to actually warm the house. In a hydronic heating system, for instance, tubing is installed throughout the house, and the hot water flows through it. This is radiant heating, and allows for more gradual, even heating than a furnace does. Steam radiators are perhaps less common these days, but the idea is the same. Steam from the boiler is distributed throughout the house to radiators, and they emit the heat necessary. Both systems have their pros and cons, of course, so consult with us before making any final decisions.

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