If you’re in the market for a new furnace, you may have noticed the acronym AFUE. AFUE stands for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency. AFUE is a measure of a gas furnace’s efficiency in converting fuel to energy. The higher the AFUE rating, the greater the energy efficiency.
Let’s take a furnace with a 95 percent AFUE rating as an example. In this case, a 95 percent rating would mean that 95 percent of the gas the furnace uses will be converted to heat, while the remaining 5 percent of heat is lost up the flue.
Or, put another way, for every $1 you spend on for heating in your home, 95 cents of it is used to heat your home while the other 5 cents is lost.
Your AFUE lets you compare efficiencies of different furnaces to help you make the right choice for your home.
The current federal guidelines state that all gas furnaces must have a minimum AFUE rating of 80 percent. But keep in mind that AFUE is not the only thing you should look at when finalizing your decision.
If your furnace is old, worn out, inefficient, or sized incorrectly, the simplest solution is to replace it with a modern, more efficient model. It’s also important to concentrate on making your home more energy efficient along with the upgrade. If for example, you have very old double pane windows on your home that are leaky and drafty, it may make more sense to go with a lower efficiency furnace and upgrade the windows at the same time. The key is creating a home envelope that allows conditioned air to stay where it’s supposed to.
When shopping for a new high efficiency furnace, look for the Energy Star label. Here in Colorado, it makes sense to select the highest efficiency system you can afford to save money on your heating bills over time.
The most important part of the process is finding a quality furnace installer. Selecting someone you can trust will let you compare models and understand the right choice for your situation. A trustworthy furnace installer will also install your furnace correctly, which will also ensure the highest efficiency possible.
Are you ready to improve your efficiency with a new, higher AFUE rated furnace?