Natural Gas Furnaces - Product Overview
The most common way to heat your home is with a forced-air system that distributes warm air through ducts in your home. New forced-air furnaces are only available in high-efficiency AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency) rating. The main difference between the new high efficient furnaces compared to older mid efficient furnaces is the purchase price, operating costs, and venting.
Starting December 31st, 2009 only furnaces with AFUE equal or greater than 90% will be sold in Canada.
High-Efficiency Natural Gas Furnaces:
are the only furnaces that qualify for the Energy Star* label
have energy efficiency ratings from 90-97% AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency**)
deliver up to 97% (with 90% being the average) of the heat they produce into your home, losing only 3% up the chimney
will save you up to 24% in energy costs compared to a mid-efficiency natural gas furnace
have additional heat exchange surfaces that extract more heat
require a floor drain to dispose of the water formed during the combustion process
do not require a chimney as combustion products are vented through PVC or ABS plastic pipe out the side of the house
extract additional heat from natural gas
are also referred to as a condensing furnace***
are the best choice for energy efficient and well-sealed homes
create less carbon dioxide
FACT - If you have a furnace that is more than 15-20 years old, it is generally 55-60% efficient which means that you are only using 55-60% of every heating dollar.
Mid-efficiency natural gas furnaces:
* Energy Star is a program that helps consumers easily identify their most efficient new products by category. Find out more details about EnergyStar.
** The Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) rating measures the amount of fuel converted to space heat in proportion to the amount of fuel entering the furnace. This is commonly expressed as a percentage. Energy Star labeled furnaces must meet or exceed 90% AFUE energy efficiency rating.
*** Condensing furnace - A high-efficiency furnace is often called a condensing furnace because it extracts extra heat by condensing water vapour from the natural gas combustion products. This step recovers additional heat, resulting in a higher efficiency.
+The Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) rating measures the amount of fuel converted to space heat in proportion to the amount of fuel entering the furnace. This is commonly expressed as a percentage. Energy Star labeled furnaces must meet or exceed 90% AFUE energy efficiency rating.