The AFUE Rating: What It Means And Why It Matters When You’re Buying A Furnace

Purchasing a new furnace is a major investment, not only up front but for years to come on your energy expenses. In fact, over the course of 15 years, the average lifespan of a furnace, the cost of equipment may be as little as five percent of the lifetime costs when you consider operational costs and repairs. One of the most important factors that will determine how much you pay each month is your furnace’s AFUE.

AFUE — annual fuel utilization efficiency — is the measurement of how well your heating equipment performs. It is a ratio based on how much fuel your furnace consumes versus how much gets converted to heat that actually ends up in your home. For example, a furnace rated at 85 percent AFUE will convert 85 percent of its fuel to heat that warms your house, while the other 15 percent will be expelled through a chimney or flue. High efficiency equipment starts at 90 percent.

High ratings are important to your savings, even in areas like Pasadena that don’t have rough winters. Older systems may be rated as low as 55 percent. An upgrade to a modern system can cut your heating expenses in half overnight. These will also provide better warmth for your house.

There are two main kinds of furnaces: condensing and non-condensing.  When thinking about which to get you should keep in mind that a condensing unit can have an efficiency rating 10 percentage points higher than its non-condensing counterpart. This will make a huge difference over the span of 15-20 years.

For more information on AFUE ratings and how they influence your savings and comfort, contact Air-Tro today.  We have proudly served Southern California since 1969.

Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about buying a furnace and other HVAC topics, call today at (626) 357-3535

Air-Tro Inc. services the greater Pasadena, CA area.