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Why You Should Seriously Consider Condensing Furnaces

Posted: 2020-12-31

More and more homeowners are switching to condensing furnaces, also known as high-efficiency heating systems. For starters, a condensing furnace converts at least 90 percent of the energy in its fuel into usable heat. While traditional furnaces waste moisture and exhaust gases that drain through pipes, condensing furnaces recycle these resources into heat, which it uses to bring comfort into your home.

High-efficiency furnaces consume 30 percent less fuel compared to their standard counterparts, most of which run at an efficiency rate of 75 percent or less. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, more efficient models are required in the U.S. North Region due to the colder climate and greater number of heating degree days.

Four Seasons Air Specialists is your all-around heating company in Centerville MN. We offer an array of condensing furnaces engineered by Lennox.

Defining AFUE

The efficiency of a furnace is measured by annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE), which is a measure of how efficient the system is when it comes to converting the energy in its fuel to heat over the course of a typical year. (Source: energy.gov)

AFUE doesn’t include the lost heat due to leaky ducts, which can account for as much as 35 percent of the energy output, especially when the ducts are located in partially or unconditioned spaces such as the attic or garage. The quality of insulation also plays an important part in the overall performance of the heating system.

As mentioned earlier, a furnace with at least 90 percent AFUE is considered a high-efficiency unit, which means that 90 percent of the fuel becomes heat for the home and 10 percent is used in the heating process. 

Benefits

Energy-efficiency is the main advantage of having a condensing furnace. But there are many other benefits that come with installing such a powerful heating system. Here are some:

High-efficiency furnaces can qualify you for rebates. The U.S. government particularly offers a federal tax credit of up to 30 percent, or up to $1500 if you purchase and have a high-efficiency furnace installed in your home.  You can also ask for manufacturer rebates and local utility rebates. Such savings will help you recover some of the acquisition costs.

Most high-efficiency furnaces have the ENERGY STAR® label. ENERGY STAR products are the same or better than standard products, only they use less energy. To earn the ENERGY STAR label, furnaces must meet strict energy efficiency criteria set by the US Environmental Protection Agency or the US Department of Energy. Since they use less energy, these products save you money on your electricity bill and help protect the environment by causing fewer harmful emissions from power plants; and you get the features and quality you expect.

Condensing furnaces deliver outstanding, consistent air distribution. Since these systems operate longer at a lower setting than conventional units, your home will have a uniform temperature, resulting in greater comfort.

Improved safety is another plus point of owning a high-efficiency furnace, thanks to its sealed combustion system. This technology offers a lower likelihood of hazardous combustion byproducts entering your house.

The supply lines, combustion chambers, and flues are sealed from the inside of homes thus preventing exhaust gases from leaking or being back-drafted into occupied spaces. Due to these features, condensing furnaces require slight modifications with installation and are usually more expensive than standard-efficiency models. However, their increased efficiency means they typically last longer, compared to furnaces with lower AFUE ratings.

Sealed combustion also solves the problem of dry conditions. It does not remove air from indoors but helps keep the humidity balanced during winter.

One final benefit we’d like to share with you is increased comfort. A condensing furnace uses variable-speed blowers, which adjust the airflow to meet the real-time heating needs of your home. Such blowers offer precise control of airflow, better temperature management, and improved humidity handling.

Call the Heating Experts

Upgrading to a high-efficiency furnace may involve a considerable amount of money when you purchase one, but it does pay for itself in the long run. You will be enjoying improved comfort and safety while saving cash on monthly utilities. If you need help choosing the right furnace for your home, call Four Seasons Air Specialists, your leading Lino Lakes furnace installation contractor.