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Does a High-Efficiency Furnace Guarantee I’ll Save Money?

money-savings-seesawHigh efficiency is a common buzzword for many products today. Everyone wants high-efficiency appliances, because it helps lower energy use and contributes to the environment. 

However, we recommend any consumer be cautious when it comes to promises they hear about how much a high-efficiency appliance will save them. The important word to watch out for is will. Because to get straight to the question in the title, getting an appliance such as a high-efficiency furnace installed is not a guarantee of money savings. 

Looking into high-efficiency units is a good way to plan for energy savings, and we recommend customers investigate units with high AFUE ratings (more about this in a moment). But there are other factors to consider when it comes to a new furnace installation, and just focusing on efficiency can lead to wasting energy.

Furnace Efficiency Is Measured as AFUE

AFUE stands for annual fuel utilization efficiency, which is the percentage of its fuel source that a furnace model converts directly into heat energy as measured over a year of performance. For example, a gas furnace with 90% AFUE converts 90% of its natural gas into heat for the home and loses 10% to exhaust during its annual use.

What’s important to know here is that a furnace will not perform at its AFUE rating all the time. Often, it will perform at lower efficiency. AFUE also doesn’t account for energy cost. An electric furnace has 100% AFUE because there is no exhaust with using electricity—but electricity is often more expensive than natural gas, so a 100% AFUE electric furnace won’t end up being a money-saver.


Okay, we’ll stop being downers here, because if you work with professionals when it comes to getting a new furnace, you will likely end up with a system that will improve on energy performance compared to your last one. 

What HVAC professionals like our team can do is balance out efficiency, the cost of the unit, and how it works in your home so that you end up with the ideal heating system. 

Here’s one example of how professionals help you get the best from a new furnace: sizing it. A furnace must be the right size for a home to keep it warm without energy waste. A furnace that is too large will drain massive amounts of energy, and it won’t matter what its efficiency rating is. It could be the highest-efficient condensing gas furnace ever made, but if it’s too big it will still wreck your heating bills with the determination of a giant monster smashing Tokyo. Experts know how to measure the heating requirements of a home so the furnace that goes into it will be able to achieve the best efficiency performance.

Okay, I Feel Better

Good! Now, if you are looking for a new furnace, or maybe only furnace repair in Holly, MI, we can help see that you get the best service possible. High-efficiency may not guarantee you savings, but you’ll get nothing less than the finest work from our team and many years of happy heating. 

First Choice Heating & Cooling is here to meet all your home heating needs in Fenton, Linden, Holly, and the surrounding areas. If your home had a voice … it would call First Choice!

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