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Buying a Furnace

Modern furnaces are as much as 40% energy-saving in comparison to 20 year old furnaces. This means the newer ones generate much lesser environmental negative impacts and lower monthly bills. When purchasing a furnace, Energy-saving and Cost-efficiency is the two fundamental ideas that you must take into consideration, along with the following guidelines:

  • What to Look For?


From a purchaser’s point of view, focus on the fuel efficiency rating of the preferred furnace. This is nothing but a measure of the percentage of fuel converted to heat. Older models are rated at 60% whereas the newer models promise a rating between 78% -96%.


Besides that, the Energy certified Star Label & the CEE i.e., Consortium for Energy Efficiency (both of which must be 90% efficient), must be checked. CEE approved models may commission additional discounts from both regional and utility energy organizations.


  • Why are they Efficient?

Furnaces having 90% efficiency save up fuel by gradual condensing & re-using the formed water vapor. Variable-speed fan motors serve to save electricity.

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These benefits can add up to the cost of the furnaces, hence they are often only economical in bitterly cold climates. In relatively milder climate areas, the cost and energy savings, both might be negligible.

  • Other considerations:

You must also conduct a thorough ACCA MJ Analysis to ensure that your furnace is adequately –sized for your desired square footage and optimum heat-loss levels. The oversized machines are noisy and consume more energy. They may also wear out faster by frequent on and off cycles. You must get the furnace installed in a well insulated, properly conditioned space having ample room for the access and airflow.


The Most Efficient Modern Day Furnaces: According to the ratings by CEE, Coleman Echelon has 98% efficiency. Similar models are also manufactured under the York Affinity & Luxaire Acclimate brands, by the Johnson Controls. During water vapor condensation and variable-speed fan motor’s usage, these furnaces generate heat in 1% increments to modify the comfort levels utilizing minimal energy.

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  • Wood-pellet furnaces: They ably burn biomass (scrap wood or agricultural waste). They are best for rural areas that have almost nil access to heating oil lines or natural gas, but are in proximity to plenty of biomass and wood pellets.
  • All electric furnaces: They are the only ones reaching to an exact 100% efficiency but are cost-prohibitive in areas having high electricity costs. Moreover, traditional coal-fired electrical plants have about 30% efficiency. Therefore, it is better to look to directly converting the cleaner-burning gas to heat.
  • Solar-powered electric furnaces: They are exceptions to the non-electric rule in off-grid homes. However, they require expensive solar arrays and back up power sources because of the lesser sunlight hours in contrast to higher heat necessity during the winters.
  • Geothermal furnaces: They are inexhaustible with zero emissions, high efficiency and draw underground heat for generation in homes. They are free, but involve sizable upfront costs.