Buying a furnace is a long-term investment that greatly affects enjoyment of your home, so a little advance planning goes a long way. Knowing how to choose a furnace for your home helps ensure you get a model that keeps you comfortable in Houston or Galveston’s chilly winters without running up your energy bills. If you’re looking for a new furnace, there are a few issues you’ll want to get familiar with.
AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency)
– Energy efficiency is one of the first things to consider when buying a furnace. AFUE provides an easy way to find each model’s efficiency. The higher the AFUE, the more efficient the furnace. Mid-efficiency furnaces typically fall into the 80 to 83 percent AFUE range, while high-efficiency models can reach AFUEs of up to 98.5 percent. Looking for the Energy Star label also will help you find higher efficiency furnaces.
– Condensing furnaces are highly efficient because they extract heat from the flue gases so that heat isn’t wasted as happens with non-condensing furnaces. A modulating gas furnace vs. two-stage furnace is another consideration. A modulating model offers multiple levels of heat output, whereas a two-stage model offers only two.
– “How big of a furnace do I need?” is one of the most common questions homeowners ask when buying a furnace, and rightly so. An undersized furnace won’t keep you warm on the winter’s coldest days.
Some contractors intentionally oversize furnaces to make sure the equipment can handle even the coldest weather. Unfortunately, oversizing reduces the furnace’s efficiency. For optimal sizing, your contractor should follow the ACCA’s Manual J for heating load calculation.
– “Can I deduct a new furnace on my taxes?” is another common question. Currently, 25C federal tax credits allow you to claim a credit of up to $150 on a furnace with an AFUE of 95 percent or higher. Dollar to dollar, a tax credit nets you more money than a deduction.
For trustworthy guidance on choosing a furnace that meets your needs, contact us at Davis Air Conditioning & Heating. We can help wherever you are in the Houston, Galveston, Angleton, Brazoria, Ft. Bend or Sugar Lane areas.