Save this Winter with a High Efficiency Furnace

Winter is almost here and so are your heating bills. Unfortunately, your heating bills can take quite a chunk out of your finances. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, the majority of your energy bills are spent on heating your home. Given this statistic, it makes sense that you would want save money on your heating bills. But  can you?

Yes, you can—if you buy a high efficiency furnace.

Understanding the Efficiency Rating of High Efficiency Furnaces

Before you go shopping for a high efficiency furnace, you need to know the efficiency rating that all furnaces now display.

The efficiency rating of furnaces is called the AFUE which stands for annual fuel utilization efficiency. The AFUE measures how efficiently the unit uses its fuel during a typical year. It does this by calculating the total heat output of the furnace compared to the amount of energy the furnace consumed.

For instance, if you see a furnace with an AFUE of 90 percent, that means that 90 percent of the fuel’s energy becomes heat for the home and the remaining 10 percent of the energy escapes up the chimney or elsewhere. High efficiency furnaces with AFUE’s of 90 percent are highly efficient and, as such, will save you money on your heating bills.

Buying a High Efficiency Furnace

Finding a furnace’s AFUE rating is not difficult. By law, new furnaces must prominently display their AFUE. But there are a couple of facts that you should know:

  • The higher the AFUE, the more energy efficient the furnace is.
  • High efficiency furnaces (fossil-fueled) will have AFUEs of between 90 and 97 percent.
  • Mid efficiency gas furnaces will have AFUEs of between 80 and 85 percent.
  • The minimum allowable AFUE rating for a warm-air, fossil-fueled furnace today is 78.
  • Electric furnaces will have AFUEs of between 95 and 100 percent because no energy is lost up the chimney or flue. However, the skyrocketing cost of electricity may make an electric furnace a poor choice if you want to save money on your heating bills.
  • High efficiency gas furnaces are capable of using 30 percent less fuel than their older counterparts.

Buying high efficiency furnaces can save Long Island residents a lot of money on their heating bills. So, if you’re considering a replacement, consider a high efficiency furnace.   It will save you money now and into the future.

T.F. O’Brien services the Long Island, New York area.

Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about preventive maintenance and other HVAC topics, please download our free  Home Comfort Resource guide.