Nobody celebrates when a major appliance fails, particularly when it’s your trusty old furnace. You know you’re in for a significant outlay to replace it, and that hurts. However, we’re here to tell you there’s a bright side to furnace shopping these days. Read on and learn how improved new furnaces are over that vintage model you’ve relied on for so long. Plus, we’ve got some tips to keep in mind when you go furnace shopping.
Remember These Points When Furnace Shopping:
Get the right size.
The most important rule when furnace shopping is to get the right-size equipment. A furnace that’s sized too big will short cycle, turning on and off continuously and running inefficiently. A furnace that’s sized too small will run continuously (again, inefficiently). Make sure your consultant uses Manual J software to correctly calculate how big your furnace should be, after inputting pertinent factors (including square footage) for the calculations.
Get the right AFUE.
When you go furnace shopping, you will notice that furnaces are rated for energy efficiency by a metric known as AFUE, or annual fuel utilization efficiency. The higher the AFUE, the more efficient the furnace. For instance, your old furnace’s AFUE is likely 65% or lower, while a newer, very efficient furnace has an AFUE close to 100%. The higher the AFUE, the more money you will save on your utility bill.
Look for efficient features.
Modern furnaces abound in features that make them more energy efficient, such as these:
- Variable speed blower: Helps deliver heated air more slowly and with less noise.
- Dual heat exchanger: A heat exchanger draws heat from the gas as it burns. Newer furnaces provide a second heat exchanger to do a more thorough job.
- Ignition system: Modern furnaces start by means of an ignition system, which adds efficiency.
- Modulated heating: Furnaces with this feature have a gas valve that modulates the amount of heat the furnace dispenses so that temperatures are always within one or two degrees of the set point.
For more furnace-shopping tips, contact Hansberger Refrigeration and Electric Company.