Where you aware that more than one-half of your home’s energy costs are linked to heating and cooling? This is why it’s so important to have an energy-efficient HVAC system.
Furnace efficiency standards were last modified to 80 AFUE in 2015. AFUE, or annualized fuel utilization efficiency, calculates how effective your furnace is at transforming natural gas into heat. An 80 AFUE rating means your furnace will expend about 20% of the fuel it uses while generating heat.
In 2022, President Biden proposed new energy-efficiency standards for residential gas furnaces that would greatly reduce emissions, save homeowners money and promote sustainability.
This measure is anticipated to:
- Save Americans $1.9 billion annually.
- Reduce carbon emissions by 373 million metric tons and methane emissions by 5.1 million tons over three decades, the equivalent of what 61 million homes emit each year.
Starting in 2029, the suggested rule would mandate all new gas furnaces to be 95 AFUE. This means furnaces would convert nearly all the gas they use into heat.
With these facts in mind, you may be asking yourself "what happens to my existing furnace"? As of this writing, not much, as the proposed rule won't go into effect until 2029 at the earliest and does not affect furnaces that are already in use.
But if you’re going to be needing furnace replacement in Lodi soon, highly energy-efficient furnaces are ready and available. Learn how these furnaces can save dollars each month off your energy bills.
Guide to Condensing Furnaces
How Condensing Furnaces Work
A condensing furnace is a type of heating system that uses a secondary heat exchanger to trap wasted heat from the furnace's exhaust gases. This decreases the volume of energy wasted, enhances energy efficiency and lowers greenhouse gas emissions. It also requires less natural gas to create the same amount of heat in comparison to other types of furnaces.
How Condensing Furnaces Differ from Non-Condensing Furnaces
The primary difference between a condensing furnace and a non-condensing furnace is the condensing option's use of a secondary heat exchanger to capture any wasted heat from its exhaust gases, while the latter does not.
The life span of a condensing furnace depends on the brand, model and other factors. Usually, a condensing furnace is likely to last between 10-20 years with proper maintenance and regular service. If your heating system doesn’t have regular furnace maintenance, the unit may have a significantly shorter life span.
Why Condensing Furnaces Require a Higher Investment
Typically, condensing furnaces are more pricey than non-condensing furnaces. This is because of their increased efficiency and the extra hardware essential to capture any wasted heat from its exhaust gases. The added energy savings can usually balance out the cost of purchase, however, so over time, it may be worthwhile investing in a condensing furnace.
Guide to Variable-Speed Furnaces
Variable-Speed Furnaces: The What's and How's
A variable-speed furnace can change its fan speed subject to the heating needs of your [[location]] home. It operates at a slower speed until it detects a temperature decrease and then increases speed up to provide more heat. This type of system is a lot more efficient than traditional furnaces, as it only utilizes the amount of energy required to heat your home, and thus, saves you money on your utility bill.
Many of the variable-speed furnaces are condensing furnaces, although some are available in non-condensing models with lower AFUE ratings. In order for a furnace to be classified as a condensing furnace, it must be 90 AFUE or higher.
Do Variable-Speed Furnaces Run All the Time?
A variable-speed furnace doesn’t stay on all the time. In fact, it runs at different speeds according to the temperature in your [[location]] home and the amount of energy it takes to keep that temperature.
When too much energy is essential to maintain your preferred temperature level, the furnace will increase to a higher speed in order to keep up with demand. This allows for more efficient heating and cooling in your home while also offering quieter operation.
Guide to Two-Stage Furnaces
Two-Stage Furnaces: What They Are and How They Work
A heating system with two settings of operating - high and low - is called a two-stage furnace. During the low stage, the furnace runs at a reduced capacity in order to maintain a desired temperature inside your home more efficiently. During the high stage, the furnace will operate at full capacity to meet demands for greater warmth or cooling. With a two-stage furnace, you can achieve much better energy efficiency and consistent temperatures in all areas of your home.
While two-stage furnaces are highly efficient, not all systems are condensing furnaces.
Does a Two-Stage Furnace Function All the Time?
A two-stage furnace won’t run all the time. In the low stage of operation, the furnace runs at reduced capacity in order to maintain a preferred temperature more efficiently within your home. When more warmth or cooling is needed, the furnace will flip to its high stage and run at full capacity. For this reason, two-stage furnaces are proven to help reduce energy costs as it is not operating constantly.
Comparing Two-Stage and Variable-Speed Furnaces
Two-stage furnaces have two stages of operation, low and high. During the low stage, the furnace performs at reduced capacity to help maintain a desired temperature within your home. When additional warmth or cooling is necessary, the furnace will shift to its high stage and operate at full capacity.
Variable-speed furnaces can work at a variety of speeds in order to uphold a desired temperature more accurately within your home. Through this ability it can also help reduce energy costs as it is not constantly running on full power like many two-stage furnaces are required to do.
Differences Between One- and Two-Stage Furnaces
One-stage furnaces have a single stage of functioning and operate either at full power or not at all. In other words, the furnace will always run in order to maintain a desired level of comfort within your home.
Conversely, two-stage furnaces have two stages of operation, low and high. During the low stage, the furnace runs at reduced capacity in order to maintain a desired temperature more efficiently within your home. When additional warmth or cooling is necessary, the furnace will switch to its high stage and operate at maximum capacity.
Set Your Furnace Installation Appointment with Tokay Heating and Air Conditioning Today
It takes experience and constant education to stay knowledgeable about furnace technology advancements. That’s why our Tokay Heating and Air Conditioning specialists are here to help with a free, no-pressure quote for furnace installation. We’ll assess your home, your heating requirements and your budget, and then we’ll help you find the ideal solution. Connect with us at 209-257-3156 to get started today!