Best Gas Furnaces Under 2000 in 2017

What are the best gas furnaces less than $2000? If you want the 80% furnace that’s affordable and offers two-stage heating, there are three units below that will serve you very well. When you’d prefer a 90% furnace for less than $2K, there are options there, and the three best are here too.

80% AFUE or 90% AFUE: Which is Better for You?

AFUE is the gas furnace version of gas mileage – how much heat the furnace transfers into your ductwork for the gas it burns. It stands for annualized fuel utilization efficiency, the efficiency of the furnace over an entire heating season.

Furnaces are made with one or two heat exchangers. Those with a single heat exchanger are 80% efficient. They cost less, but 20% of the heat they produce is vented out of your home in the combustion gas exhaust. Furnaces with two heat exchangers transfer more heat – as much as 98% of it. For less than $2,000 you can get a furnace in the 90% to 96% efficient range. Here are tips for choosing an 80% furnace or a 90%-plus furnace:

  • The colder your climate is, the more efficient your furnace will be because the extra cost will be recouped in 3-7 years through lower energy costs vs. 10-20 years in climates with mild winters
  • If your top priority is an ecofriendly home, then buy the most efficient gas furnace in your price range
  • If you plan to move in the next few years, then an 80% furnace is a cost-effective choice, but keep in mind that an efficient furnace is attractive to home buyers in cold climates

Let’s move on to cost.

Every furnace model is made in a range of sizes. Some start as small as 40,000 BTU output and range upwards to more than 140,000 BTU. That means the price of any model varies quite a bit based on size. So, some of the furnaces in our lists might cost more than $2,000 for the largest furnaces produced in that model. However, the average cost of the model in all its sizes is less than $2,000, and the most expensive cost less than $2,400.

Best Furnaces Under $2,000 – 80% AFUE

These are quality furnaces that deliver two-stage heating. The furnaces run on low capacity most of the time, so the heating cycles are longer and quieter. This produces better temperature balance than a single-stage furnace offers.

1. Amana AMEH8 Gas Furnace

  • 80% AFUE
  • Two-stage heating
  • Stainless steel, tubular heat exchanger
  • Multispeed ECM blower produces comfortable heating and uses less energy
  • Warranty: Amana has the best warranties in the industry – a lifetime heat exchanger warranty that provides a new furnace if it fails, and a 10-year general parts warranty
  • Amana AMEH8 price: $850-$1,600

Amana has been a Daikin company since 2012, and Daikin has invested significantly to upgrade the quality of the Amana line, and it shows in the affordable quality of the Amana AMEH8 gas furnace.

2. Carrier Performance 80 58CTW Gas Furnace

  • 80% AFUE
  • Two-stage heating
  • Variable-speed blower offers even better comfort and more balanced temperatures than the Amana furnace above, and it does a better job of dehumidification when supporting a central air conditioner
  • Energy-saving ECM blower motor
  • Warranty: 20-year heat exchanger and 10-year parts warranties
  • Carrier Performance 80 price: $1,250-$2,200

Carrier furnaces are among the more expensive, but they have a very good track record of dependability.

3. Lennox Elite EL280 Gas Furnace

  • 80% AFUE
  • 2-stage heating
  • Dual fuel capable
  • Warranty: 20-year heat exchanger and 5-year general parts warranties
  • Lennox EL280 price: $1,250-$2,150

Lennox is a quality brand, but its warranties are not among the best in the industry. Part of the reason is that Lennox keeps prices down by reducing the long-term financial risk of warranty work. This furnace should deliver 17-20 years of dependable service when installed by a qualified contractor and properly maintained – as all furnaces should be.

Best Furnaces Under $2,000 – 90+% AFUE

Some of these furnaces are pricier, but deliver outstanding energy efficiency for cold climates and eco-conscious homeowners.

1. Heil QuietComfort 96 G9MXE Gas Furnace

  • 96.2% AFUE (Energy Star)
  • Single-stage heating
  • Multispeed blower
  • Dual fuel capable
  • Warranty: Lifetime heat exchanger and 10-year parts warranties plus a 1-year No Hassle furnace replacement warranty on the heat exchanger
  • Heil G9MXE price: $1,400-$2,200

Heil has upgraded its lineup in the last few years, and this unit delivers quality and affordable heating that is very efficient.

2. Trane XT95 Gas Furnace

  • 95% AFUE (Energy Star)
  • Single-stage heating
  • ECM energy-efficient blower motor
  • Warranty: 20 years on the heat exchanger; 10 years on all other parts
  • Trane XT95 Price: $1,450-$2,300

This Trane gas furnace is a solid choice for quality, reliability and cost-efficiency. Like Lennox, Carrier and Bryant, Trane doesn’t provide exceptional warranties. Amana, Goodman, Maytag (and related Nortek brands) and Heil (and related International Comfort Products/UTC brands) all have better warranties.

3. Goodman GMEC96 Gas Furnace

  • 96% AFUE (Energy Star)
  • 2-stage heating
  • Multispeed ECM motor
  • Stainless steel secondary heat exchanger
  • Warranty: The heat exchanger is covered by a lifetime warranty plus a 10-year unit replacement warranty provides an entire new furnace if it fails in the first decade; All other parts are covered for 10 years.
  • Goodman GMEC96 Price: $1,000-$1,600

You get a lot of furnace and a very good warranty with Goodman. The brand has been the value leader for 30+ years. As a Daikin brand, the quality and dependability are improving too. This is a 15 to 20-year furnace.

Optimize Efficiency and Durability of your Gas Furnace

Gas furnaces are easier to install than a heat pump, so some homeowners go the DIY route. If you have experience – or a friend/relative with HVAC experience – you might be OK. However, apart from the dangers of fire and CO leaks, there is the concern that the furnace won’t run efficiently or durably if not properly installed. If you want peace of mind that the unit is installed correctly, hire a qualified contractor with good experience. Get competing estimates from several of the top installers in your area. Check out their Google/Yelp reviews and BBB report. If you want to save time, another option is our 3 Free Estimates offer that provides quotes from three of the best installers in your area. They are prescreened, and there is no obligation to use any of them. The service is free to you.

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