Furnace Efficiency Ratings
Customers purchasing heating or cooling equipment want to know how energy-efficient their new unit will be, and each type of equipment has its own measure. Gas furnace efficiency is measured in AFUE, which stands for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE). For a gas furnace rated at 95% AFUE, that means that 95% of the heat produced by burning the fuel gas ends up in the occupied space where you want it, and only 5% of the heat escapes out the chimney or vent.
95% is the current standard of excellence for combustion efficiency, and you should purchase nothing less if buying a new furnace. Twenty years ago, 80% AFUE was the standard of efficiency, and there are still some old 70% and 80% AFUE furnaces around, but those older furnaces have been superseded by 95% models. If by chance you have an old 70% model, a 95% efficient model would reduce your heating costs by around 25% of your current heating bill–which is nothing to sneeze at!
Not saying you should run out and buy a new gas furnace tomorrow if you presently have an older unit, but if you have breakdown repairs in the $300. or more range, that is most certainly when you should upgrade to 95% AFUE. For more information about AFUE and costs to upgrade to higher efficiency, call Air Control Heating and Electric, Inc at (509) 924-0018.