Can a high efficiency gas furnace reduce your energy bill? Let’s check out the facts. As the name suggests, this type of furnace is more efficient than other furnaces. It has a higher energy efficiency rating, which means that it uses considerably less gas to produce the same amount of heat as other furnaces. It also has other features that contribute to its higher efficiency.
The following is a comparison of the energy efficiency ratings of gas furnaces:
Low efficiency furnace: Has an efficiency rating of 78% AFUE, which is the minimum allowed for new furnaces.
Mid efficiency gas furnace: Also known as the standard furnace, it has an efficiency rating of 80% to 83% AFUE.
High efficiency gas furnace: This Energy Star approved furnace has an efficiency rating of 90% to 98%.
AFUE stands for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency, and it is the measure of the amount of fuel converted into heat in proportion of the amount of fuel burned. Higher AFUE means a more efficient furnace. For a furnace to be Energy Star approved, it must have an efficiency rating of 90% or higher.
A high efficiency gas furnace works in much the same way as other gas furnaces. Cool air enters the furnace through a designated inlet, where it mixes with natural gas and the mixture enters the combustion chamber, where it is ignited by the pilot light. The burning gas heats the heat exchanger, which in turn heats the air flowing around it. The heated air travels through ducts and flows into the rooms of the house.
A high efficiency gas furnace is a condensing furnace. It has two heat exchangers made of steel tubes. Together, these two heat exchangers pass as much as 98% of the heat to the air that flows around them. Other characteristics of these highly efficient gas furnaces are:
- Electronic ignition
- Variable speed blower
- Sealed combustion chamber
- Steel tube main heat exchanger
- Secondary heat exchanger for condensing flue gases
- Condensing furnace
A high efficiency gas furnace can save money on your energy bill in the following three ways:
- Heat Leakage is Prevented: A high-efficiency furnace has a double sealed combustion chamber which prevents the leakage of heat so that all the heat produced is passed to the heat exchanger which heats the air.
- There are Two Heat Exchangers: The first heat exchanger heats the air that flows around it and the second heat exchanger condenses the flue gases, reducing the amount of heat needed to heat the air. Higher efficiency furnaces allow little heat to go waste.
- Smaller Exhaust Fans: The exhaust fans control the flow of air and gases, allowing them to be directed more precisely. The small and compact fans prevent heat from escaping and the smaller flue pipes reduce leakage.
A high-efficiency furnace uses less gas, produces more heat, wastes less heat and heats up more air. You may not see the benefits immediately, but in the long run it can save you a lot of money. Visit us at Laird and Son, the leading heating and air conditioning specialists in Toronto, to learn more about gas furnaces in Toronto.