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How is Furnace Efficiency Rated?

When you’re in the market for a new heating system, you want to make sure you get the best unit for your home and individual needs. For many, this means choosing a system that is not too costly to install. If this is your main criteria, you may be able to find many relatively inexpensive furnaces on the market. However, this should not be your only consideration when deciding on a new unit for furnace installation.

Here in Lincolnwood, IL, furnace efficiency should definitely be a factor in selecting a new furnace, as a more efficient system may help you save hundreds of dollars a year. Many people who have owned furnaces in the past may not realize that today’s systems are far more efficient than they once were. Advancements in technology have allowed manufacturers to create furnaces with very little heat loss provided you have a well-maintained duct system.

The U.S. government mandates that every furnace sold in the country is required to display vital information about the efficiency of the unit. Furnace efficiency is measured with the AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency). This is represented by a percentage which lets you know how much heat enters your home compared to the amount of energy it takes to run the unit.

This may be easier to understand by looking at some examples. All gas furnaces sold in the United States today must have an AFUE of 80% or higher. This is a step up from much older systems, which may sometimes have an AFUE closer to 50%. However, a furnace with an AFUE of 80% will still not be the most efficient system available. What this number means is that your unit uses 80% of the energy it consumes to heat your home, while the rest of the energy escapes elsewhere. And this number doesn’t even account for other sources of heat loss such as leaky ducts.

To find the most efficient furnaces, look for ones that carry the distinguished ENERGY STAR label. These meet the Environmental Protection Agency’s high standards for efficiency, and gas furnaces with this seal boast an AFUE of 90% or greater. For more information about efficiency and furnace installation service in Lincolnwood, IL, speak to one of our trained heating technicians at Shavitz Heating and Air Conditioning. Contact us today to schedule service.

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