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A gas furnace uses the gas supply as its fuel to generate heat before dispatch to the surrounding. It might be connected to a gas pipeline in the community to supply it to where it is not available or it could be connected to the gas tank alone. We are going to understand more about the whole process and maybe get to answer the question of how do gas furnaces work

The first thing would be to understand the parts of a gas furnace before getting to understand their role in the process and how the whole system works. 

Main Parts of the Gas Furnace and How They Work 

Gas burners 

The gas burners are responsible for the release of gas for combustion. The gas burners work hand in hand with the thermostat. When the thermostat detects a drop in the outdoor temperature, they automatically call for heat. 

To generate the heat that is required, the burner has to open up to allow ow of gas, hence combustion will take place. The gas burners gave valves that are dictated by the thermostat. This is how it ends up starting or stopping the furnace according to the temperature rise or drop. 


The thermostat is the part that dictates whether the furnace should go on or off. It does this by detecting the outdoor temperatures. If there is a temperature rise, the thermostat will make the gas furnace go on. 

This will generate the heat that is required before it is spread to the rest of the room. This component is very important in automating the gas furnace system. Without it, you will have to switch your furnace on and off which is a little hard or inefficient. This is usually the first place to check in case there is any problem with the functionality of the gas furnace.

Ignition switch 

An ignition switch is a component that actually starts the flame when the gas passes over it. It is connected to an electric circuit which is necessary for starting a spark that ignites the gas to start a flame. 

If this ever gets faulty, there might be a problem starting the furnace. It is connected to the circuit breaker such that when there is a problem, the electric current can be cut off automatically. 

Blower fan 

This is just a fan that is strategically st to spread the heat that is generated from the furnace to other parts of the room. It is important that it works for us to have the furnace running. Otherwise, there will be a bud up of hot air inside the room which will lead to the automatic shut off of the gas furnace. 

Heat exchanger 

This is the component that basically supplies heat between the inside and the outside. The heat inside is eventually supplied to the outside which heats up the air around it before transferring it to the blower fan for distribution. The intensity of the heat that is supplied across the room will solely depend on the strength of the heat exchanger. 

How do gas furnaces work – The vent 

The vent is the main passage that leads to the outside. It is basically used as an exit for the excess combustion gases. Sometimes, it is known as the vent and the main function is to make sure that there is no waste gas in the house. It might sometimes serve the purpose of clearing the air from the inside if it’s contaminated. 

The control panel 

This is the main control interface that is responsible for responding to various prompts from the various components of the gas furnace. It is connected to the thermostat and the temperature control switch which together start or turn off the gas furnace as appropriate. 

Draft induced fan 

This is what drags the gas into the burner section of the furnace and also drags out exhaust directing it to its exit through the vent. This makes sure there is air to heat and that the exhaust gases are gotten rid of through the vent. 

The heating cycle 

In the furnace, what takes place is usually known as the heating cycle. This is the process that usually leads to a supply of warm air in the house when the temperatures drop. The heating cycle is simple. 

It actually involves burning of the gas and distribution of heat as follows; Gas from the supply is directed to the burners via the igniter which starts a flame and makes the gas burn. The gas burns producing heat that is directed to the heat exchanger to make the air around warm. 

That warm air from the exchanger has directed the blower fan where it is forced into the ductwork of the house. The warm air is then distributed to all parts of the house. The cold air from the house is directed to the furnace through the ductwork and heated all over again. The cycle continues again and again until the house is well regulated in terms of temperature. 

The process is very dependant on the thermostat and the temperature control. These are the ones that dictate whether the heating should start or not. Therefore for the process to be complete, every component should be working properly. 

How Do Gas Furnaces Work – Final Word 

For the furnace to warm the air inside our houses, a lot is involved. The furnace has more than one component and it is connected to different systems of the AC unit. Understanding how it works gives you a better chance to fix it in case there is a problem or to know how to handle it in day-to-day use. 

It is a process but it involves a lot of components, which makes it important to take care of every single system on the furnace. Gas is our main fuel here. 

From the supply system to the blowing fan, there needs to be a consistent flow of functionality to make sure there is the production of heat. So how do gas furnaces work? It’s quite well answered and much easier to understand now. 



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