When it’s time to purchase a new heating system for your San Diego-area home, you will want to know how efficient it is. This is one of your most important considerations. High levels of efficiency mean the furnace will keep your home comfortably warm, and do so without wasting energy — saving you money in the process.
Heating equipment is rated using AFUE, or annual fuel utilization efficiency, which must be displayed to allow consumers to easily compare products. AFUE is the ratio of heat generated by a furnace compared to the fuel consumed over an average heating season.
A rating of 90 percent indicates that 90 percent of the fuel becomes useful heat in your home, while the other 10 percent of heat energy is lost, escaping up the flue. Heat lost via piping or the duct system is not accounted for in the calculation. Be aware that if the home’s ductwork isn’t properly sealed, insulated and well-designed, that duct-or-pipe heat loss may be significant.
Since older furnaces had efficiency levels between 68 and 72 percent, you will likely save quite a bit on your monthly utility bills once your new system is installed. According to the US Department of Energy website, current medium-efficiency furnaces are defined as having an AFUE of 80-83 percent, while high-efficiency units have a 90-97 percent AFUE ratio. Other hallmarks of high efficiency include a second heat exchanger and sealed combustion. Certain propane, oil or natural gas-fueled models may qualify for a federal tax credit, if the AFUE is at or above 95 percent.
If you have questions about heating system efficiency, contact the local experts at ASI Hastings Heating and Air Conditioning. We provide complete HVAC services from system design to installation, repairs, and maintenance. Visit our website to learn more, or just pick up the phone.