Are High Efficiency Furnaces Worth The Extra Dough?

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Home heating and cooling accounts for more than half of the costs we spend on utilities in our home. With so many new, high efficiency furnaces on the market, it’s exciting to think about the savings they can offer, but with that quality comes a larger price tag. This article will help you decide if a high efficiency furnace or something more conventional is the best move for you. The results may surprise you.

  1. It’s a Balancing Act

Deciding between paying more upfront to gets the highest efficiency rating and getting a regular furnace is a game of timing. If you will live in your home for more than five years, a higher efficiency model makes more sense. These models often outlast the standard fifteen year lifespan of most furnaces. A quality model will last closer to 20 years with annual maintenance and regular changing of its air filters. You’ll also get the satisfaction of an often quieter machine.

  1. Get a Better Picture by Looking at Utility Costs and Efficiency Ratings

A very high efficiency furnace will save you the maximum when it comes to utility bills. Run some comparisons to narrow your options. When you look at furnaces, look at the AFUE rating sticker on each one. AFUE stands for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency. Average furnaces on the market right now have an AFUE rating of 80%. This means 80% of the heat from the unit goes to your home, and 20% is lost while the unit works to produce heat. The highest AFUE ratings go up to 98.5% but cost $1,000 to $2,000 more than these 80% range models.

Here’s how to make the best comparison. First, total up a year’s worth of your heating bills, and then look for the rating of your current furnace. You’ll be able to see the percentage of savings between your current furnace and the newer model and you can calculate your annual savings by multiplying your annual heating bills times the percentage.

For example, if you spend $2,500 to heat your home each year and went from a 70% rated furnace to a 98.5% furnace, you would save 18.5% or $462 a year! If you went for a more conservative new furnace with an 80% AFUE, you would still save 10% for a total of $250 savings. Both options sound better, so here’s the next step.

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  1. Check Your Time Commitment

See how many years it will take for you to recoup your energy savings with each furnace. Once you know this, you’ll be able to make a decision based on how long plan to live in your current home and how much cash you want to pay upfront. Use the cost of each furnace as your starting point. Divide the cost by the amount of energy savings you calculated to see how many years it will take with each option to pay back your investment in energy savings. Also, don’t forget, beyond the yearly savings comes the peace of mind with having a newer furnace. You’ll have less need to worry about breakdowns and be within a warranty period if anything unexpected happens.

These three strategies will help you decide the best value for energy and price. Residential Heating & Air Conditioning is ready to help so give us a call today at 612-724-1899 for heating repair service in Minneapolis, MN.