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Consumer Reports Best Furnaces – Reviews & Buying Guide

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Everything is good about the winter season, the weather, the excitement of holidays, delicious food, and the feeling of togetherness. But, all the fun and excitement can fizzle out if the heat source in the house malfunctions.

Having an electric blanket is good, but it has its own limitations. To effectively counter bone-chilling winters, you will need to install a furnace at home, which can keep the entire property warm and comfortable. To get one, you can check out consumer reports on best furnaces in the section below.

Reviewing 5 Best Furnaces
1. Goodman GMSS960803BN Single Speed 1-Stage Upflow/Horizontal Gas Furnace

Goodman GMSS960803BN Single Speed 1-Stage Upflow/Horiz ontal Gas Furnace

When it comes to quality furnaces, you will find “Goodman” right at the top. We have all the furnaces on our list coming from Goodman because no other company manufactures furnaces as good as Goodman.

The furnace in discussion is a single-speed, single-stage horizontal and upflow gas furnace that has a high energy output of 80,000 BTUs.

The furnace has a 96% AFUE rating, which makes it among the most efficient gas furnaces on the market.

For every $1 of energy, the appliance produces 96 cents of heat, which is due to its quality construction that makes use of a heavy-duty aluminized steel tubular heat exchanger along with a secondary heat exchanger that is made of stainless steel.

The furnace features a single-speed induced draft blower, silicon nitride ignitor, and single-stage gas valve.

With the ability to self-diagnose itself for errors and faults, this furnace allows you to discern the issue in it, thanks to the color codes given on the appliance.

You can use this appliance with a 1-pipe or non-direct vent and 2-pipe system or direct vent system.

You can set up the gas connection from the left or right side of the furnace. A vent has been provided at the top as well as on the side, so there is ample space for hot air to leave the appliance.

The company provides a 10-year warranty on the heat exchanger and all functional parts provided in the furnace.

2. Goodman GMS80804BN Gas Furnace

Goodman GMS80804BN Gas Furnace

This is another model from Goodman, which is highly rated by users. The furnace has an AFUE rating of 80%, which means, that for every $1 of energy consumed, the appliance offers 80 cents of heat output.

This shows how efficient the furnace is. Talking about the energy output, then the furnace produces 80,000 BTUs, which is good enough to keep your house well-heated.

You can install the furnace in horizontal left, right, and upflow positions.

The furnace is not available for sale in certain parts of the US due to some guidelines and restrictions on the product, so make sure to check the name of your state before ordering this product.

When it comes to the warranty, then you will get a 10-year warranty on the heat exchanger and other functional parts.

There are a few accessories that you will have to buy separately, which include thermostats, conversion kits, and outdoor sensors.

3. Goodman GMH80803BN Gas Furnace

Goodman GMH80803BN Gas Furnace

Check out this gas furnace from Goodman, which incorporates a 2-stage gas valve with a highly advanced convertible technology that allows you to activate 2-stage operation with a flip of a dipswitch.

The furnace is equipped with all the features that you’ve read in the previous model with an addition of a patented tubular heat exchanger.

The company has made provisions in this furnace for electronic air cleaners and 24-volt humidifiers.

This is among the most efficient gas furnaces on the market with the ability to produce heat of up to 80 cents for every dollar spent to run it.

The furnace has an energy output of 80,000 BTUs, which is something you expect from Goodman furnaces.

The warranty period is also the same, i.e., 10 years on the heat exchanger and all functional parts.

4. Goodman GMSS960803BN-GSX130301-CAPF3030B6 Gas Furnace With 2.5 ton 13 SEER Air Conditioner

Goodman GMSS960803BN-GSX130301-CAPF3030B6 Gas Furnace

Take a look at this model, which includes a gas furnace as well as a 2.5-ton 13-seer air conditioner.

The energy output of the furnace is 80,000 BTUs whereas the AFUE rating is 96%, which means that for every dollar spent to run the unit, it produces 96 cents of heat output.

The inclusion of an upflow/downflow coil streamlines the operation of the unit. Just like the previous gas furnace, this one too comes with certain guidelines and restrictions, which prevent its sale in many states in the US.

Talking about the warranty, then you will get a 10-year warranty on the heat exchanger and functional parts of the unit.

The only shortcoming of this furnace is that you will have to buy conversion kits, outdoor sensors, and thermostats separately.

5. Goodman GMH80803BN Upflow/Horizontal Gas Furnace Model

Goodman GMH80803BN Upflow/Horizontal Gas Furnace

If you are looking for an oil-based furnace, then you won’t find a better one than this particular model.

This furnace is capable of heating your house in a bone-cracking winter season. The furnace comes with a 2-stage gas valve control technology that you can use to activate a 2-stage valve with a flip of a dipswitch.

You will also like the inclusion of low voltage terminals along with the features to accommodate air cleaners and 24-volt humidifiers.

The furnace incorporates a self-adjusting feature that allows the unit to adjust it to low or high stage operation automatically, but that depends on the outside temperature.

This particular feature is exciting because it works without a sensor that detects outside temperature. Get this furnace to have a warm and comfortable environment inside the house.

Types Of Furnaces

When you go out into the market to buy a furnace, you will find 4 types of furnaces: electric, natural gas, propane, and oil furnace.

Where electric furnaces heat the air by exposing the heated elements, all other types of furnaces require a heat exchanger or chamber that warms the surrounding air. Then, a thermostat tells the furnace to shut off upon reaching the desired temperature.

Natural Gas Furnace

This type of furnace is arguably the most economical with older gas furnaces having an efficiency of around 65% while the newer ones having an efficiency of up to 98%.

Moreover, natural gas is used by the majority of Americans to heat their homes. However, their usage varies from region to region.

Oil Furnace

This type of furnace is commonly found in the northeastern US. Its efficiency is less than that of a gas furnace, typically between 80-90%, but the initial cost is lower, up to 25% less than a natural gas furnace.

Electric Furnace

This is the most economical of all the four types and is very easy to install as well. An electric furnace can last for 10 years or more. The running cost of this furnace is high because the cost of electricity is higher than gas.

Propane Furnace

Propane is a by-product of oil and gas production, and it is stored in tanks. 10% of the total US households use propane in different applications. This type of fuel is perfect in areas where oil and gas aren’t readily accessible.

Criteria To Consider When Buying A New Furnace

Consider your furnace as the heart of your home because it spreads the warmth and comfort in those bone-chilling winter months.

Gone are the days when people used to gather around fireplaces or potbelly stoves to enjoy the warmth, now is the time of furnaces, but it is not that easy to buy one.

To make things easier, we have laid out some factors that you should keep in mind when looking for the right furnace.

Fuel Source

We have already discussed 4 types of furnaces, so you need to choose the type that suits your requirements the best.

If you choose a natural gas furnace, then you can save a lot on energy costs and contribute towards a better environment as well. But, you will have to get a connection to the natural gas line and bear the cost of labor for installing the furnace.

Then comes the oil furnaces, which have on-site tanks to store the flammable oil. This type of furnace is ideal for those living in secluded areas where other fuel types are not easily accessible. Oil furnaces are less energy-efficient and produce bad-quality air.

The third type is an electric furnace, which is the most popular choice since every household has a connection to local power lines, but that doesn’t mean this type of furnace is economical.

Using electricity for heating is not an energy-efficient process and can exponentially raise your power bill.

The Right Size For Your Home

You need to keep in mind the size of your home when buying a furnace. Buying a smaller capacity furnace will overwork itself for heating your space, thus resulting in premature maintenance and increasing your utility bill.

A larger capacity furnace will always try to adjust itself to maintain the desired temperature, switching itself off when overshoots and turning back on when the temperature dips.

You can take the help of an HVAC specialist to discern the right size of furnace for your house. You can also go online and enter the dimensions of your house to find the furnace of the right capacity.

Efficiency Of The Model

The ability to heat the house shouldn’t come at the cost of a high utility bill. The furnace needs to be energy efficient and you can find it by looking at the AFUE rating mentioned on the furnace.

AFUE stands for ‘Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency’, which tells you the percentage of fuel used by the furnace to heat your home.

If the AFUE rating is 80%, then that means for each dollar spent on the energy, the unit has produced 80 cents of heat. The more the AFUE rating, the more energy-efficient the appliance is.

Ease Of Installation

You can’t just go to a store, buy a furnace, come back home and turn on the appliance to enjoy the heat. You need a proper heating infrastructure at home to ensure proper installation of the furnace.

Then, there is the labor cost that you will have to pay. Make sure the fuel connection is available at the place where you intend to install the furnace and there should be proper ventilation around.

Final Verdict

Since there are different types of furnaces available on the market with each type having so many different models, it can be a daunting task to find the best furnace.


The winter is already here, so you must pick a furnace from the aforementioned list of the 5 best furnaces. If you have read the consumer reports on best furnaces, then place your order now!