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How Furnace Efficiency Is Measured

Furnace-standardThere are many options to consider when choosing the right furnace for your home and needs. However, if there is one thing that matters across the board, it’s efficiency. A furnace’s efficiency is measured by its Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency, or AFUE, rating. The Federal Trade Commission requires new furnaces to display their AFUE ratings so homeowners can compare the efficiency of various models.

So, what exactly is AFUE? To put it simply, AFUE is the ratio of annual heat output of the furnace compared to the annual fuel energy consumed by the furnace. Let’s say a furnace has an AFUE rating of 95%. This means that 95% of the fuel being used becomes heat for the home. This is important. When your furnace performs efficiently, it saves money. You would not want to pay 100% of your heating bill and only get to enjoy 50% of the heat.

Today, high-efficiency furnaces operate at 90–98.5% efficiency. Should you choose to install a high-efficiency furnace, you should know that the initial cost can be pricy, but the benefits definitely outweigh the drawbacks. Spending money on a high-quality furnace will save you money in the long run. Older furnaces might not even be rated, but if a furnace has a continuous pilot light that requires you to light it when it goes out, it’s safe to say it is only operating at about 50–70%. So, if you have an older furnace, you might be spending your money on wasted fuel.

Combined with energy efficient upgrades to your home, a new high-efficiency furnace can cut your fuel bill in half. If you have an old, worn out, inefficient, or oversized furnace, the best thing to do is replace it with a high-efficiency one.

Before You Buy a New Furnace

Now that you understand the importance of AFUE, there are a few other things you must be aware of before you purchase a new furnace. Although finding an efficient furnace is an important step in the decision process, you still need to find a system that is best-sized and suited for your home. An oversized furnace will heat your home up too quickly, causing it to go through rapid heat cycles. When this happens, it wears out the furnace and increases the chances of it breaking down. If your furnace is too small, it must work harder to heat the home effectively, thus decreasing efficiency since more fuel is used to heat the home.

The best way to ensure a furnace is the right fit for your home is to contact HVAC professionals. They can walk you through the decision-making process as well as install your new furnace. Once the furnace is installed, it is important to schedule regular maintenance. Maintenance will keep your system running smoothly and efficiently while decreasing the chance of repair needs. Plus, it will extend the lifespan of the furnace, so you’ll be warm and cozy for years to come. Gibson Heating and Cooling offers a wide range of services, including furnace repair in Haddonfield, NJ. So, if something does go wrong, you can count on us!

Contact Gibson Heating and Cooling today to get started on installing your new high-efficiency furnace!

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