You have decided to either replace an existing furnace or add a furnace to your home. Here are a few aspects of furnaces you should know about before investing in a new furnace.
Furnaces can run on different energy sources such as electric, gas and oil. Electric furnaces are environmentally friendly, and energy efficient. However, it costs more money to create heat from electricity rather than other energy sources such as gas or oil. Gas furnaces can be the most affordable while oil furnaces though effective are not environmentally friendly.
Furnaces can also be single stage, two stage or variable speed. A single stage furnace can only run at one speed, which is high. In effect, this means it’s running at a full sprint all the time no matter what the weather is outside. A two stage furnace has two settings-high and low. It will run for the most part on low, but it will kick into high gear if necessary during cold spells. Last, but not least a furnace can be variable speed. A variable speed furnace’s blower motor can modulate speeds depending on the temperature outside. This type of heating provides a more stable temperature in your home. It is also energy efficient and will save you money on your utility bills.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, older furnaces are only between 56% to 70% efficient. However, new furnaces can be up to 98.5% efficient. Furnaces are rated by their efficiency with an AFUE rating, which stands for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency. The higher efficiency furnaces cost more, but will also save you money on your utility bills over time. If you are wanting a highly efficient system be on the look out for a furnace that has an Energy Star logo on the yellow Energy Guide or ask your Comfort Advisor.
Each brand offers different manufacturer warranties for their products. Furnaces can come with a parts warranty, labor warranty and heat exchanger warranty. Some contractors offer warranties on top of the manufacturer warranties. Make sure to compare inquire about what warranties are available for each furnace option.
Rebates and Incentives
Utility companies incentivize customers to upgrade their heating and cooling systems through rebates. In Vancouver, WA and Portland, OR both Clark PUD and the Energy Trust of OR offer rebates and incentives. In addition, manufacturers offer rebates during their promotional periods, especially on higher efficiency equipment. Ask your Comfort Advisor about these available rebates and incentives or click here.
The most important day in the life of your furnace is the day it’s installed. Protect your new furnace by having an HVAC contractor who is licensed do the installation. It may be cheaper upfront to have an unlicensed Chuck with a truck install your new furnace, but you will most likely pay for it in the longer run with repairs and efficiency issues. Miller’s Heating & Air’s is a licensed HVAC contractor and our installers are highly trained and professional.