Did you know more than 50 percent of your home’s energy costs are linked to heating and cooling? This is why it’s critical to have an energy-efficient HVAC system.
Furnace efficiency standards were last revised to 80 AFUE in 2015. AFUE, or annualized fuel utilization efficiency, determines how effective your furnace is at transforming natural gas into heat. An 80 AFUE rating means your furnace will expend about 20% of the fuel it uses while generating heat.
In 2022, the Biden Administration proposed new energy-efficiency standards for residential gas furnaces that would substantially decrease emissions, save homeowners money and encourage sustainability.
This measure is estimated to:
- Save Americans $1.9 billion annually.
- Cut down on carbon emissions by 373 million metric tons and methane emissions by 5.1 million tons over 30 years, the equivalent of what 61 million homes emit each year.
Starting in 2029, the recommended rule would demand all new gas furnaces to be 95 AFUE. This means furnaces would change nearly all the gas they use into heat.
Considering these guidelines, you might be asking yourself what does that mean for my existing furnace? As of now, not much, as the proposed rule won't go into effect until 2029 at the earliest and will not affect furnaces that are already in use.
But if you’re going to be needing furnace replacement in Middletown soon, highly energy-efficient furnaces are already available. Learn how these furnaces can save you money on your utility bills.
Guide to Condensing Furnaces
How Condensing Furnaces Work
A condensing furnace is a style of heating system that uses a secondary heat exchanger to collect wasted heat from the furnace's exhaust gases. This decreases the extent of energy wasted, enhances energy efficiency and lowers greenhouse gas emissions. It also requires less natural gas to produce the same volume of heat when compared to other types of furnaces.
How Condensing Furnaces Differ from Non-Condensing Furnaces
The main difference between a condensing furnace and a non-condensing furnace is the condensing option's use of a secondary heat exchanger to capture any wasted heat from its exhaust gases, while the latter does not.
The life span of a condensing furnace will depend on the brand, model and other factors. In most cases, a condensing furnace will last between 10-20 years with proper maintenance and regular service. If your heating system doesn’t have regular furnace maintenance, it may not last as long.
Why Condensing Furnaces Require a Higher Investment
Typically, condensing furnaces are more costly than non-condensing furnaces. This is the result of their increased efficiency and the additional parts necessary to capture any wasted heat from its exhaust gases. The additional energy savings can often balance out the cost of purchase, however, so in the long run, it may be worth investing in a condensing furnace.
Guide to Variable-Speed Furnaces
Variable-Speed Furnaces: The What's and How's
A variable-speed furnace can adjust its fan speed subject to the heating needs of your [[location]] home. It operates at a slower speed until it detects a temperature decrease and then ramps up to provide more heat. This type of system is significantly more efficient than standard furnaces, as it only utilizes the amount of energy necessary to heat your home, and thus, saves you money on your utility bill.
Most variable-speed furnaces are condensing furnaces, although a handful of are available in non-condensing models with lower AFUE ratings. To allow a furnace to be classified as a condensing furnace, it must be 90 AFUE or higher.
Do Variable-Speed Furnaces Run All the Time?
A variable-speed furnace doesn’t run all the time. Rather, it runs at different speeds according to the temperature in your [[location]] home and the amount of energy it needs to keep that temperature.
When too much energy is essential to maintain your chosen temperature level, the furnace will switch to a higher speed to manage that demand. Doing this will ensure more efficient heating and cooling in your home while also offering quieter operation.
Guide to Two-Stage Furnaces
Two-Stage Furnaces: What They Are and How They Work
A heating system with two settings of operating - high and low - is called a two-stage furnace. On the low stage, the furnace performs at a reduced capacity to help maintain a preferred temperature within your home more efficiently. During the high stage, the furnace will operate at full capacity to fulfill demands for greater warmth or cooling. With a two-stage furnace, you can experience much better energy efficiency and steady temperatures throughout your home.
While two-stage furnaces are extremely efficient, not all models are condensing furnaces.
Does a Two-Stage Furnace Operate All the Time?
A two-stage furnace does not continuously run. In the low stage of operation, the furnace runs at limited capacity in order to maintain a preferred temperature more efficiently within your home. When additional warmth or cooling is needed, the furnace will switch to its high stage and operate at full capacity. As a result, two-stage furnaces are proven to help reduce energy costs as it is not operating continuously.
Comparing Two-Stage and Variable-Speed Furnaces
Two-stage furnaces have two stages of operation, low and high. During the low stage, the furnace works at reduced capacity as a way to uphold a desired level of comfort within your home. When more warmth or cooling is needed, the furnace will switch to its high stage and operate at maximum capacity.
Variable-speed furnaces can work at a variety of speeds in order to keep a more accurate desired temperature within your home. So, if you have more options for temperature-settings, you also have more flexibility for heating you home, which also means more savings on energy bills.
Differences Between One- and Two-Stage Furnaces
One-stage furnaces have a single stage of operation and operate either at full capacity or not at all. In other words, the furnace will be on at all times in order to maintain a desired level of comfort within your home.
Conversely, two-stage furnaces have two stages of operation, low and high. During the low stage, the furnace runs at reduced capacity in order to maintain a desired temperature more efficiently within your home. When additional warmth or cooling is necessary, the furnace will shift to its high stage and operate at maximum capacity.
Set Your Furnace Installation Appointment with SchagrinGAS Company Today
Making sense of all the modern furnace technology can be confusing. That’s why our SchagrinGAS Company specialists are here to help with a complimentary, no-pressure estimate for furnace installation. We’ll assess your home, your heating needs and your budget, and then we’ll help you find the ideal solution. Connect with us at 302-231-1380 to get started today!