What is the Efficiency Rating of Furnaces and Boilers?

The scoop on AFUE

furnace and boiler efficiencyThere’s so much to think about when you’re shopping for a new furnace or boiler for your Hudson Valley home.

But what all your questions boil down to is your need to find the most energy-efficient furnace or boiler that is in your budget. It makes sense. After all, the better the energy efficiency, the less overall energy you’ll need to keep your home warm and comfortable, which equals lower costs for you.

When you’re shopping for a furnace or boiler, you’ll come across something called AFUE. This is important. AFUE stands for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency. Think about it as the MPG rating for your heating system. The higher the AFUE rating, the more energy-efficient the furnace or boiler is.

The AFUE of a boiler or furnace represents the average of heating oil, propane or other fuel that your heating system uses compared with how much heat it produces over a heating season.

This is how AFUE works: Let’s say the furnace or boiler you’re looking at buying has an AFUE rating of 80. That means an average of 80 percent of the heating oil or propane is uses is converted into heat, while the other 20 percent is lost in the conversion process.

In financial terms, 80 cents of every dollar you spend on heating oil or propane goes towards heating your home. But today’s high-efficiency furnaces and boilers can achieve AFUE ratings of 95 percent or more! That’s some great bang for your buck!

The United States Department of Energy gives common AFUE ratings for heating systems. The current minimum AFUE standard for a new heating system is 80.

Low-efficiency: 56% – 70%. Mostly seen in older and outdated heating systems.

Medium-efficiency: 80% – 85%. Can be either new or older systems under 20 years old.

High-efficiency: 90% – 98.5%. This is found in most new or newer 2010’s heating systems.

Want to know you’re the AFUE rating for your current furnace or boiler? Check the faceplate. It’s usually there.

Maintenance is key to keeping the efficiency of your furnace or boiler high. There are other factors, including the quality of its installation, how well your home is insulated and sealed, and what condition your ductwork is in.

This is a lot to consider, so trust the professionals at Depew Energy for the installation, maintenance and repair of your new furnace or boiler. And don’t forget to ask about our service agreements, too!