A well-maintained home furnace can stay useful at least 15 years. However, if your unit is approaching the big 2-0 – or if it’s not heating your home as efficiently as it could – the time could be right for replacing your furnace.
The upcoming winter is forecast to be a harsh one in the Edwardsville area, with frigid temperatures and heavy precipitation across the entire Midwest. So if a new furnace is on your “to do” list, there’s no reason to wait.
Make it simple
Replacing your furnace involves research, but it leads to a more informed decision that can result in a comfortable home, a greener energy approach and subsequent cost savings.
First, know how to gauge a furnace’s operation.
The Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) rating evaluates how much energy the furnace turns into heat and how much is wasted. The higher the AFUE rating, the more efficient the furnace.
- Low-efficiency furnaces run off a continuous pilot light: AFUE 68-72 percent.
- Mid-efficiency furnaces are run by an electronic ignition: AFUE 80-83 percent.
- High-efficiency furnaces have a sealed-combustion operation: AFUE 90-97 percent.
You’ll find the AFUE number displayed on today’s new furnaces.
Next, learn how you can make your home more efficient.
Before replacing your furnace, assess your home for other energy-saving opportunities.
- Small changes, like sealing off leaky windows, can help insulate your home and save you money – especially if it means you can buy a smaller new furnace.
- Examine your furnace air-filtering system. If it still uses a 1-inch-thick filter, you can improve air quality by opting for a system with a 4- or 6-inch pleated filter.
Finally, team up with a trusted HVAC contractor.
Your HVAC representative is your partner in energy savings. Discuss your needs and expectations with him before you start shopping for specific furnace brands.
- Is saving energy costs important to you?
- How long do you anticipate keeping the new furnace?
- Are any rooms in your home not being heated properly?
- Are green energy options a priority?
Replacing your furnace is a serious commitment, but it’s also an easy decision once you have the right information. Contact Ernst Heating & Coolingfor help picking out a new furnace. We’ve been serving the Edwardsville area in one way or another since 1951.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about furnace replacement and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
Furnace Replacement Guide image via Shutterstock