If you live in an older home, chances are your furnace isn’t very efficient. An inefficient furnace is not just an environmental concern; it may be costing you money and not heating your house properly. Even if your old furnace hasn’t stopped working, it may be time to consider upgrading to a high-efficiency furnace.
High-efficiency furnaces turn the majority of their fuel sources (typically gas) into heat. Energy efficiency in furnaces is measured by the AFUE (annual fuel utilization efficiency). A rate of 90% heat conversion is typically the desired rating for an efficient furnace. AFUE measures the ratio of fuel converted to heat to the fuel entering the furnace. Many furnaces will be marketed as “high efficiency,” but the only way to know for sure if they are is to see if the AFUE rating is at or above 90%.
Problems with Old Models
Traditional furnaces lose heat through the flue in the form of heated gases and water vapor. High-efficiency furnaces capture that heat through a secondary process and redirect the heat back into the home. Having a high-efficiency furnace can reduce energy prices by up to 20%, which can pay for the price of the new furnace over time. This usually occurs within a period of about three years. Even if your old furnace does not have a flue and is entirely electric, you may be paying more in electricity than you would by switching to a fuel-efficient furnace.
Old furnaces can be expensive to repair as well, and it may be more economical to consider replacing it altogether. When you decide to replace your old furnace, the first thing to consider is the size of your new furnace. Having a proper-sized furnace will ensure that it heats your home adequately. A furnace that is too large may increase your heating bill unnecessarily, and one that is too small may not meet your heating needs.
Selecting and Installing a New System
The professionals at Patriot Air are well acquainted with the needs of homeowners around Columbus, Ohio, and are prepared to help you make the best furnace decision that will be cost effective for years to come. High-efficiency furnaces not only cut down on utility expenses but decrease the overall use of fossil fuels – making them very environmentally friendly.
You may notice that a high price of an efficient furnace is usually associated with a higher AFUE rating. The difference in cost may mean higher savings in the future, and you should consider the return on your investment when investigating the best furnace for your home. Especially in an area of the country that can see very cold winters, a more efficient furnace may be the best decision economically and environmentally. Take the time to calculate your energy costs with the different models of efficient furnaces rather than estimating them. That will narrow down your range of choices and help you make the best investment for your home.
If you have a model picked out, ask an HVAC professional about it prior to installation. He or she will tell you if there have been reliability issues with any models on the market or if a model is so new that it hasn’t been properly tested in the marketplace.