If you’re like most people, you typically spend time comparing your options before making a big purchase. When you want a new car, you might spend time looking into special features like reclining back seats or sunroofs or any number of safety features. When buying a new washer or dryer, you might prefer them to be stackable or to have a stainless steel finish.
So why are we content to pick just any model of heating and cooling equipment? In our area, high efficiency makes a huge difference, and we recommend putting this as a priority above the initial price. Here’s how this may benefit you.
Why Efficiency Matters
The efficiency of your new heater is, we think, the most important factor involved in selecting a new system. Today, heaters are manufactured with parts that allow little heat to be wasted so it can efficiently transfer into your home, which is particularly important in our service area.
Where we live, homeowners find themselves paying hundreds of dollars a month for home heating. Customers tell us that their bills drop dramatically when they make an upgrade to a new, high-efficiency furnace or boiler, by as much as about 40%!
Why Price Shouldn’t Be Everything
Yes, a more efficient heater will be more expensive than comparably sized systems. However, the initial price doesn’t have to be a deterrent. You can always look into credit options, after all, but more importantly, you save on the overall cost of system ownership when it’s an efficient unit—big time.
Another point on pricing: don’t pick a heater of a smaller size than you need just because the price is lower—even if it’s a higher efficiency than another system you’re considering.
Additional Features of High-Efficiency Equipment
Ideally, you should look for a heater with an AFUE (Annual Fuel Efficiency Utilization) rating over about 90. With an efficiency rating this high, you’re likely to notice a dramatic drop in your heating bills in just the first month of ownership, as long as the system is properly installed.
Low energy and fuel costs are the primary draw of a high-efficiency heater, but this is not the only benefit. Thanks to new manufacturing standards, you may also notice the following improvements when you upgrade.
- Performance – Nearly any HVAC upgrade will result in improved performance, but this is especially true when you upgrade to high-efficiency equipment. Many people fear that lower energy usage means performance suffers, but the opposite is true. When you choose a high-efficiency modulating furnace, temperatures stay within about 1°F of the thermostat settings at all times.
- Noise – Today’s efficient furnaces use a quieter fan as well. When you choose a system with a variable speed blower, it can automatically reduce the speed of the fan as needed for better efficiency and a bonus feature: peace and quiet.
- Durability – Finally, a high-efficiency furnace may actually last years longer than some of its less expensive counterparts. This, and the overall savings of the system, makes the purchase well worth it.