San Jose HVAC – What AFUE Is And Why You Should Care

san jose hvac

With Fall upon us and Winter just around the corner, you may be considering a new furnace for your San Jose or Bay Area home. While having a new furnace installed is a large investment, it’s one your family will enjoy for years to come when the temperatures get chilly outside! Most important is choosing a furnace with a good AFUE rating. Not sure what that is? Keep reading.

AFUE stands for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency. Basically, AFUE is the comparison or measurement of how much energy your furnace uses over a one-year time period versus how much heat it produces. AFUE ratings must be displayed on all new furnaces and boilers as required by the FTC, so consumers can determine which are most energy efficient.

Here’s an example of how AFUE ratings are calculated

Say you come across a furnace with a 90% AFUE rating. Essentially, the furnace is capable of converting 90% of the energy it uses into heat that warms your home. Only 10% is lost through the heating process, which is very little when compared to some other furnaces.

New gas furnaces must have an AFUE rating of at least 78%. Those units that are highly efficient will have AFUE ratings of between 90% and 97%, while those that are average generally have ratings of between 80% and 83% according to the EPA.

What are the drawbacks of high efficiency furnaces?

There’s really only one…the fact that furnaces with high AFUE ratings tend to cost more initially. Considering you save on monthly energy costs and the fact that these furnaces reduce your carbon footprint, the pros of purchasing a high AFUE rated furnace far outweigh the cons.

If it’s time for a new furnace and you’re considering a high efficiency model or you simply need your current heating system checked out before winter creeps up on us, give the San Jose HVAC experts at Ortiz Heating & A/C a call. Keeping your home comfortable and your costs down is what we do best!