Reaching High Efficiency with Your Furnace

A person is pointing at a bar graph chart on a piece of paper

We get angry when we have to put tires on a car. That’s not how we wanted to spend our money. Well, underperforming furnaces are sort of like tires - they wear out with time and lose some effectiveness in the process. In both cases we expect them to run safely, effectively, and at levels of high efficiency. So it raises the questions, “How do I know if my system is running at a high efficiency level, and what should I do if it isn’t?”

First let’s talk about how people can know if their system is performing well.

  • Find the UFUE rating.

    The annual fuel utilization efficiency (UFUE) rating indicates how the furnace would function at its optimal performance. If the rating is over 90 - which means the furnace turns at least 90 percent of its fuel into energy - the unit will be designated as High Efficiency. A 90 rating means that the furnace only wastes 10 percent of its fuel. The energy rating will be located on a sticker on the face plate. Knowing this will be a start at knowing the limitations of the system.

  • Look for changes.

    Does the furnace run a lot yet still not warm well? Does the furnace run more than it should? Is the heating bill higher than it should be? These could be signs that the furnace is not attaining high efficiency. Smells and sounds are also often indicators that something is amiss.

So what should people do when they suspect the furnace is underperforming?

  • Call an experienced HVAC company like Jake’s Heating & Cooling.

    Call an experienced HVAC company like Jake’s Heating & Cooling. We have the skills, resources, knowledge, experience, and customer care to make sure homes are safe and furnaces are performing at their highest potential.

  • Consider a newer, more efficient system that will serve them better.

    Not only is using less energy good for the environment, it’s also good for the budget. That decrease in fuel costs can offset some of the cost of a new unit. Replacing a unit with a rating of 70 with a unit rated 90 would mean saving 20 percent off of the heating bill on average. Over the months that adds up and soon the costs of the new furnace are offset. Here’s a calculator to see if the return on investment is solid. Plus, the newer unit will most likely be quieter, safer, and give less trouble.

Jake’s Heating & Cooling has been around a while, and diagnosing performance issues is our specialty. So contact us with questions or to schedule service. If having us routinely checking and maintaining the HVAC system is intriguing, give us a chance to tell you about our Memberships. We bring to the table more than just our experience and skill - we love to serve homeowners. Give us a chance to prove it!

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 If you have any questions about your HVAC system or need maintenance done, be sure to contact our professionals!