How to Install Forced Air Heating

A man installing forced air heating.
What You'll Need
Variety of wrenches
Reciprocating saw
Heating unit
Duct work
Duct tape
Hacksaw and tin snips

Installing a forced air heating unit in your home is a big investment. While many contractors will advise against installing it yourself, and it is indeed a big job, it is something you can do yourself. The ultimate question that you will have to ask yourself is whether it is worth it. It will cost a contractor anywhere from $500 to $5,000 to install a forced air heating system.

There can be significant savings in installing the system yourself. There are several considerations you will have to keep in mind before doing so yourself. The most important two are your ability to properly route and connect gas lines and if the heating unit's warranty will be voided if it is installed by any other than a trained HVAC technician. A leak in a gas line is no small matter and can cause carbon monoxide poisoning. If there is a gas leak, a spark can ignite the gas and cause a fire and explosion. Make sure you know your limits before installing the HVAC unit yourself. Here you will find information on the steps required to install forced air heating in your home.

Step 1 - Install HVAC Unit

Ensure that the forced air heating is installed according to the manufacturer's specifications, as if it is improperly installed, it may void the warranty. Also, make sure that it is installed with proper ventilation, and that the location of the installation is appropriate.

Step 2 - Install Ductwork

Install ductwork to route the warm air from the HVAC unit to the rooms that need to be heated throughout the house. This will entail measuring the routes from the main duct coming off the furnace unit to the location where vents will be installed. You will need to plan for both delivery to the rooms (warm air) and intake (room air to be warmed, which is routed to the furnace).

You will need to measure the most direct route for both intake and delivery, as this will ensure the furnace is as efficient as possible. If duct work is routed haphazardly, much heat is lost in the delivery and the furnace will have to work harder. Cut the duct work to the required length with hacksaw and tin snips. Secure duct work together will ½ screws, and wrap joints in duct tape.

Step 3 - Install Grills

Install the grills in either floor or ceiling and secure with screws provided with the grills.

Step 4 - Install Thermostat

Following the manufacturer's directions, install the thermostat. This will tell the furnace when it needs to operate and when to switch off when the desired temperature has been reached. Locate the thermostat in a room away from main entryways, particularly doors as the temperature changes caused by opening and closing can distort the readings.