Today more than ever, people are attempting to conserve energy in their homes. It’s no longer good enough to have a powerful furnace keeping a house warm during cold weather; people want a furnace that won’t waste energy and create cost spikes on their utility bills.
One way that you can tell the efficiency of a heating system, such as a furnace, is to look at its AFUE rating, a number that measures how well the system converts its fuel source into heating output. You will find AFUE ratings on all furnaces that you may consider for installation in for your home. (Heat pumps have a separate heating efficiency rating, HSPF, which is measured in a different way.) When you are shopping for a new furnace for your heating, AFUE will be one of the most important criteria for making the final choice.
AFUE should not be your only criteria for a new heater, however. To help you decide on the best new heating system, rely on the assistance of the experts at JW Heating & Air. Contact us today to set up an appointment to pick out the ideal heater for your household.
How AFUE Is Measured and What the Number Means
The letters “A-F-U-E” stand for “annual fuel utilization efficiency.” The rating is a percentage that shows how much of the fuel the heater receives that it converts into heating power. Unlike some measurements that are made over a single test, AFUE is a measurement of efficiency over an entire year.
The higher the AFUE percentage, the more efficient the system. For example, a gas furnace with an AFUE of 80% would generate 80 BTUs (British Thermal Units) for every 100 units of natural gas it burns. So 20% of its fuel is lost as exhaust, and the remaining it converts into heat.
Old furnaces used to have AFUE ratings around 55–65%; the new high-efficiency models can have AFUE in the 90s. For a furnace in Los Angeles to merit the ENERGY STAR label from the U.S. Department of Energy, it must have an efficiency of 90% or greater.
Keep in mind that just because a heating system has high AFUE doesn’t mean that it will do a good job heating your home. A heating system may convert its fuel source to heat very efficiently and with little waste, but that doesn’t mean it will produce enough heat for your comfort. That is a separate specification altogether, and it requires the assistance of professional installers to make sure that the heater is the right size to keep your home warm.
Call on JW Heating and Air for information about AFUE and how to find the right heating service in Los Angeles to keep your family comfortable and your bills under control.