A propane tank outside a home connected to a propane furnace system

Propane furnaces are simple to use and install, and getting one may be the perfect solution for heating your home in a cost-effective and energy-efficient way.

However, you may wonder how often you will have to replace it and how long it will last.

So, let’s get into the details and discuss the longevity of propane furnaces. Then, we’ll tell you how to make your furnace last longer, and go into its costs, return on investment, and energy efficiency. 

How Long Should a Propane Furnace Last? 

Propane furnaces should last between 15 and 20 years. However, they can last even longer when well cared for. So, performing proper maintenance on your furnace is critical if you want it to last. 

What Is a Propane Furnace?

There are quite a few furnace types available for heating your home. The most common furnaces are natural gas, oil, electric, and propane. Propane furnaces are ideal for heating your home, given their energy efficiency. 

A propane furnace is an energy-efficient furnace that runs on propane gas. These furnaces are desirable because they offer more longevity, cost-efficiency, and ease of use than most other types. 

Closeup on a propane furnace in a basement
Courtesy of Home Guide

According to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE), propane furnaces are more energy-efficient than electric, natural gas, or oil. Energy efficiency is one reason many people opt to install a propane furnace. 

They are also easy to maintain since propane burns clean. With these furnaces, you won’t have to deal with soot or overheating electrical components!

How Much Does a Propane Furnace Cost?

The cost of installing a propane furnace includes many elements, such as the installation fee, cost of a propane tank, the removal of old equipment, and propane gas lines. Given all the aspects of purchasing and installing a new furnace, the total cost can vary significantly depending on your specific circumstances. 

It costs between $4,000-$32,000 to get a propane furnace. This broad price range includes additional ductwork, gas lines, installation, and the cost of the unit itself. The most significant cost-determining factors are your home’s size, other installation fees, and the furnace’s quality. 

Let’s look at those average prices and determine how much it might cost you to get a new propane furnace. 

Installation Costs

The price of installing a propane furnace can vary depending on the furnace’s size, type, and the size of your home. 

According to Home Guide, the national average cost of a low-end furnace hovers around $2,200. However, a standard one costs about $3,900, and a high-end furnace costs around $5,700.

Additionally, you can choose between standard efficiency and high-efficiency furnaces. These also vary in cost. A high-end, high-efficiency propane furnace can cost nearly $7,400 to install. 

Also, the installation cost depends on the size of your furnace and home. A bigger house means you will need a larger furnace. 

For a 1,600 square foot home, you should expect to install a new furnace that costs between $600-$2,200. For a larger house of up to 3,200 square feet (297 square meters), your installation fee will be closer to $2,800.  

Additional Costs When Installing a Propane Furnace

It is essential to consider that the installation fees are separate from the cost of the actual furnace, including the tank.

A new 25-gallon propane tank costs around $1,500, whereas a 1,000-gallon (4,546 liters) tank will cost around $4,000. Also, if you have an old propane tank, it can cost between $500-$1000 to remove it. 

You will also have to consider installing propane gas lines in your home, which usually costs around $100. The main costs associated with a propane furnace include the unit’s price, the tank, the installation and removal fees, and the propane gas line installation. 

A technician installs a propane furnace in a home's basement
Courtesy of Propane.com

Many other additional charges may come up as you install your furnace. Additional costs may include installing new ductwork, permits and inspections, thermostat replacement, and replacing any old electric connections to switches.

So, if you install a propane furnace, you can expect to pay around $32,000 for everything. 

The Price of a Propane Furnace Compared to Other Types

You may wonder how the cost of a propane furnace compares to other types of furnaces.

Cost analysis shows that they cost two to three times more than a gas tank. However, that does not account for changes in gas prices, which are likely to continue going up. So, if you want a future-proof furnace, stick with propane. 

In addition, despite the higher installation price, purchasing a propane furnace can still help lower your overall costs by saving more energy. The following section will discuss the return on investment for buying a propane furnace. 

Return on Investment

Your furnace is an initial investment in terms of the cost. However, it is vital to consider the return on your investment to determine how much money you can save with propane, even after factoring in the steep installation fees. 

Propane furnaces last 15 to 20 years; during that time, you’ll have to keep the propane tank stocked with fuel and pay for maintenance. These costs are essential to consider since some furnaces’ fuel and maintenance fees can be much higher than others. 

So, suppose you install a propane furnace to replace your electric one. In that case, you can expect to reduce your maintenance and fuel costs by approximately one-third just by switching to propane. 

Let’s break down that cost analysis.

On average, you will pay around $2,600 annually to operate an electric furnace. However, you will only pay between $1,000 and $2,500 per year to fuel and maintain propane.

Again, this cost trade-off depends on your type of furnace size, but overall, propane furnaces are indisputably cheaper than electric ones.

You can improve your return on investment by performing regular maintenance to help your furnace last as long as possible. 

Are Propane Furnaces Energy-Efficient? 

Propane furnaces are the most energy-efficient compared to natural gas or oil furnaces. They work by producing more energy or heat, using less fuel. 

So, using these furnaces can reduce the cost of your heating bills. 

The efficiency of your furnace is measured using the Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) scale. This scale measures what percentage of fuel turns into heat. The higher the rate, the less energy you need to heat your home. 

A standard-efficiency propane furnace ranks between 80-89% efficiency, whereas a high-efficiency propane furnace measures 90-99% efficiency. 

So, when you go with a propane furnace, you will not be wasting fuel, and with a higher-quality model, you’ll get all of your money’s worth. 

How To Maintain Your Furnace

The more diligent you are in maintaining your furnace, the longer it will last. It could last longer than 20 years with proper and consistent care. 

Getting your furnace serviced at least twice a year is essential. While it may only need it once a year, servicing it twice yearly can help you detect any problems early on. 

A technician services a propane furnace in a basement

Since you do not use your furnace as much during the warmer months, dust and debris can build up in the air filters. This gunk damages your furnace and is unsafe in your home.

So, it is vital to have the filters cleaned or replaced to ensure that your furnace works efficiently and keeps your environment and air pure. 

Advantages of Propane Furnaces

Aside from lower costs and better energy efficiency, there are also several other advantages to installing a propane furnace. 

  • Propane produces more heat than electric furnaces. As a result, propane can heat the air from your furnace significantly more than electricity. 
  • Propane is more dependable than an electric furnace. For example, your electric furnace will not work if you lose power. In contrast, your propane furnace will continue to function regardless. This reliability could be particularly advantageous in severe weather or storms. 
  • Propane is more eco-friendly and safer than other options. It is a clean fuel source and does not damage soil or water. In addition, propane does not build up residue if spilled. 
  • Propane furnaces last longer than most other furnace types. With more durability, you will save on energy costs each year, and you will rarely have to change your furnace or purchase a new one. 

Conclusion

Propane furnaces are an excellent option for your home. They are energy-efficient, provide better heating, are more cost-effective, and last longer than most other furnaces.

You can expect your furnace to last between 15 to 20 years or longer as long as you take good care of it. 

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