If you’re going to replace your furnace, you need to do the research first. Furnace replacement isn’t something you should take lightly, not only because of issues like cost and efficiency, but also because furnace technology is constantly updating and improving.
Today, we’ll help you get with the times, and tell you more about the latest and greatest furnace replacement options.
The one thing to keep in mind is that there are no real “rules” — some people convert from a gas to an electric furnace, but some people go from electric to gas with their furnace replacement.
Should You Replace Your Furnace?
Obviously, you’ll know it’s time to replace your furnace if it’s completely breaking down, but otherwise, what are some signs it’s time for a furnace replacement?
- More than 15 years old
- No longer seems to be warming your house sufficiently
- Big energy bills
- Turns on and off frequently
- The air quality in your house is poor (nowadays there are furnaces that come with an air filtration system; for example, some come with an electrostatic filter, which uses an electric charge to trap dirt and dust)
- You are interested in switching to a zoned system, which separately controls the temperature of upstairs and downstairs
If it’s time to say goodbye to your old furnace, don’t despair! We’ll help you get right past that grief period, with some explanations on what brand-spanking-new furnace is right for you!
First off, you’ve probably heard the acronym “AFUE,” which stands for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency. This is a percentage measuring how good a gas furnace is at taking in fuel, and converting it to heat. Most furnaces have an 80% – 90% AFUE rating, meaning they efficiently use all but 10% – 20% of the fuel.
While 20% may not seem like that much of a loss, think about it this way: How much do you spend on natural gas every year? Well, if your furnace only has an 80% AFUE, then only $0.80 on the dollar are actually heating your home, and the other 20 cents are wasted. Whereas, if you had a 95% efficient furnace, then only $0.05 are wasted. That may not sound like much, but it can easily add up to a $10 difference every month.
And, sure, you can make your furnace as efficient as possible with your own choices, like changing out the filter regularly, and turning the heat down when you’re out of the house during winter days. But overall, if you want to consistently improve your furnace’s efficiency, the only way is furnace replacement!