After watching your gas bills steadily climb month after month all winter, you want to do everything you can to bring it back down and put some money back into your wallet.
That’s where a high-efficiency furnace comes in. If you’ve been researching ways to save on heating, chances are you’ve come across the recommendation that you make the switch. But are high-efficiency furnaces worth it? We’ll go into everything you need to know about high-efficiency furnaces and how to start saving on your energy bills.
It can all be a little overwhelming, but that is why you have the experts at Husky Heating & Air Conditioning. When you’re ready to replace your furnace vs. repair it, we will go over all your options and help you find the one that meets your home & budget needs.
How Much Will an 80 vs. a 95 AFUE Furnace Pay Back?
In Ontario in 2018, a household will spend approximately $1,226.92* on natural gas, the primary source of heating. For the purposes of this article, let’s round that up to $1,227.
Once you calculate your bill, you next need to find the annual fuel utilization efficiency score (AFUE) of your current furnace. This can be found on your furnace label or in the user’s manual for your own calculations.
Most older furnaces have an AFUE of 80. That means that 20% of your heat – and money – is being wasted. Using an AFUE of 80 and a yearly bill of $1,227, that’s about $245 dollars a year.
That’s a discouraging number to see. But there is hope: an upgraded furnace has to have an AFUE rating of 90 or higher, which means you’re going to see savings no matter what.
We recommend to everyone who buys a new furnace that they upgrade to something with a 95 AFUE or higher, to get the most savings possible. To calculate those savings, simply multiply the difference in AFUE (95-80 = 15%) by your monthly or yearly bill amount.
1,227 x 0.15 = $184/year in savings.
The Savings Add Up
We know that doesn’t seem like a lot, but think about how much you were wasting before! And when you add those savings up over the lifespan of your furnace – which can be as long as 15 years with the proper maintenance – you could see over $2,750 in savings!
If you get a furnace with a 98 AFUE, that’s $221 a year in savings. That means over $3,300 over the course of your furnace’s life. And we’re sure you can find all kinds of good uses for that money!
*Please note: This figure and the following calculations are based on approximate collected data adjusted for inflation. If you would like to get a more exact estimate of potential savings, you will have to use your own information from your natural gas bills and furnace. This bill calculator can help >
What Can I Do to Make Sure My New Furnace Stays Efficient?
Once you go energy and cost-efficient, make sure you stay that way. High-efficiency furnaces cost more up front, but features like economical on-and-off cycling programs and protection against moisture in the heat exchanger will prolong its life. A furnace will experience wear and tear over time, and you need to stay diligent if you want those savings. Here are some tips to keep your furnace as efficient as possible.
1. Get An Annual Maintenance Check
A well-cared for furnace is a productive and happy furnace. In fact, a tune-up can increase your furnace’s efficiency by 20% (or sometimes more). Check out our infographic with all the information* >
Bonus: Regular maintenance can also increase the lifespan of your furnace, which means you won’t have to replace it as often.
*Calculated amounts in this infographic are based on 2014 data.
2. Use Your Programmable Thermostat
Your programmable thermostat will be your best friend when you use it to its full capabilities. Keep the house cozy when you’re in it, and slightly cooler when you’re out so you don’t waste money and energy on heat you’re not getting to appreciate.
3. Keep Your Furnace Filter Clear
This is something you can do yourself, and it’s something you should be doing on a regular schedule. Too much dust and dirt clogging up the filter will cause your furnace to work harder, leading to decreased efficiency.
Benefits Of Buying A High-Efficiency Furnace
Better Impact On The Environment
Energy efficiency is great for your wallet, but it’s even better for the environment. They reduce greenhouse gas emissions and unlike traditional gas furnaces, higher efficiency models typically use one-third the amount of fuel. Because of this, furnaces with a high efficiency rating are typically eligible for rebates to promote energy savings.
Lower Energy Bills
Using high-efficiency furnaces means cheaper energy bills as you use less natural gas. Using less fuel is one of the ways it helps offset the upfront cost of a new heating system. With natural gas fuel expenses rising, the higher efficiency gas furnace you have, the kinder you will be to your wallet in the long run! The more energy-efficient your gas furnace is, the fewer utility costs you have every month!
Peace & Quiet
Your old furnace is likely not very good at being quiet. As parts wear with time, they loosen and make more noise than modern high-efficiency furnaces. Your high-efficiency gas furnace will deliver comfortable heat to your whole home with just a whisper!
Increased Comfort & Air Quality
High-efficiency gas furnaces have multiple fans that distribute the heated air through your air ducts. This variable-speed blower means that each room will stay at a comfortable temperature, instead of going from hot to cold in some rooms. This HVAC system will also help improve indoor air quality by making sure air is circulating, and by filtering through an upgraded air filtration system compared to older HVAC systems. Plus, they use sealed combustion chambers that won’t bring dry, outdoor air into your home. Great indoor air quality is important for your health.
Upgrading is Surprisingly Affordable
We know what you’re thinking: the savings are fantastic, but that doesn’t minimize the cost of upgrading and installing a new heating system. How can I make upgrading more affordable?
It’s true: upgrading a furnace isn’t free. But there are some great rebate programs we offer that can help reduce the cost and make getting high-efficiency furnaces not only possible but a no-brainer!
So Is a High-Efficiency Furnace Worth It? Absolutely!
Are high-efficiency furnaces worth it? Definitely! Get your furnace installed, and when you book regular tune ups with us, we’ll help your new high-efficiency furnace stay just that.I’m Ready to Start Saving