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Wall Furnace Cost Guide

A wall furnace is a heating system that is installed within the walls of a home, typically between the studs of the wall itself and a room's drywall. It is not uncommon for a wall furnace to project at least a few inches into the room that it services. A wall furnace works through simply drawing cool air through the bottom of the unit, heating it, and then expelling it through a vent located at the top. Typically, a wall furnace is used in smaller homes, apartments or in rooms added on to homes. Often times, homeowners opt for wall furnaces in the new additions of their homes as a way of saving money on the expensive duct work that would need to be done to connect the new part of the home to existing furnace system.

The Costs

  • The minimum reported cost for wall furnace installation is $740.
  • The maximum cost reported for wall furnace installation is $900. 

Pros & Cons of Wall Furnaces

Homeowners should weigh both the advantages and disadvantages of choosing a wall furnace before making the decision to purchase one. Because of their relatively low cost when compared to more robust furnace systems, many homeowners turn to wall furnaces as a means of efficiently heating select spaces of their homes without having to spend thousands of dollars on duct work. This is especially true in areas of homes where new construction is being done. Rather than paying to have the new duct work done, homeowners may opt to spend under $1,000 on a wall furnace.

Wall furnaces do come with their inherent disadvantages. For example, wall furnaces are generally suitable for homes in relatively mild climates. In colder climates, the part of the furnace exposed to the cooler elements in the walls can be damaged by excessively cold temperatures, leading to potentially expensive repairs down the road. Furthermore, wall furnaces are only meant to heat small spaces. Since they use convection and radiation to heat a space, rooms that are further away from the location of the furnace itself will not be as warm. Homeowners should be prepared for the lack of consistency in heat commonly associated with wall furnaces.

Types of Wall Furnaces

Gas and electric are the two most common types of wall furnaces. The latter option is the most popular, as it is the easiest to install and tends to be the least expensive. The price for electric wall heaters typically falls on the lower end of the spectrum at about $740 for installation. Since electric wall heaters can be installed anywhere electric power is available, homeowners have more options when it comes to the unit's placement as compared to gas heaters.

Gas wall heaters are generally more efficient and better for the environment. Because of the built-in, double-vent system associated with these heaters, better air circulation tends to occur, allowing for better air quality within the home. Homeowners who opt for gas wall heaters tend to spend less money in heating costs throughout the year. On the other hand, installation of gas wall heaters can be expensive if the proper ducts and gas lines are not available, easily driving up the cost hundreds of dollars. At that point, homeowners may be better off choosing an electric wall heater.

Additional Costs & Considerations of Wall Furnaces

The best way to figure out whether or not a wall furnace is the best option for a home is to seek advice from an HVAC specialist. Many companies and contractors offer free consultations. During such a consultation, a heating specialist will walk through the home and determine whether or not the space is a viable candidate for a wall heating system and which type of system is best. Contractors will generally issue the homeowner a quote for the cost of installation.

When receiving a quote from an HVAC company, there are some considerations to keep in mind. It should be determined whether or not the price quoted includes labor and material costs. While the average cost of a wall heater itself ranges between $450 and $550, labor and other related costs can drive up the price of installation significantly higher.

Most wall furnaces take between two and three hours to install, and the average hourly rate for labor charged by many companies is around $50 to $60. As such, homeowners should generally expect to spend between $150 and $200 in labor costs alone. Some companies may also charge additional costs for any supplies and tools necessary to complete the job such as lumber, drywall and insulation materials. This can easily tack on another $60 to $70 to the overall cost of the installation. Homeowners should always carefully analyze their quotes to find out what is included and what may come at an additional cost. Homeowners can commonly cut costs by providing the materials themselves.

By receiving quotes from at least a few different HVAC companies in the area, homeowners can compare them and determine which company is right for them based on:

  • The overall quoted price
  • What is included in the price
  • Customer reviews for the company

While a low price may be enticing for homeowners looking to save money, it is important to consider online reviews of any HVAC company or contractor before deciding whom to hire for an installation job. It is always imperative that the installation job is done correctly, as a botched wall furnace installation could lead to serious problems down the road, including the release of harmful amounts of carbon monoxide in the home and expensive repair costs. Looking into a company, the satisfaction of previous customers, how long it has been in the business and how familiar it is with wall furnace installation, is a vital step to take before hiring.

By keeping these tips and considerations in mind, homeowners can make the right decisions regarding wall heaters in their homes. Using the above strategies, they can also save money in the process.

Last updated on May 17, 2016

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