AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency) is one of the most important measures for your furnace, boiler, or water heater. But what exactly does an AFUE rating tell you?
The AFUE number (often displayed on a yellow sticker on the unit) is a ratio that represents the amount of fuel that is consumed by your equipment compared to the amount of energy produced by the equipment over the course of a season.
Here’s an example: in an 80 AFUE furnace unit, 80 percent of the fuel consumed by the machine results in heat for your home; the other 20 percent is wasted somewhere in the delivery chain (usually up your chimney). A useful way to think about AFUE is to consider it in terms of money: For every dollar you spend on fuel for an 80 AFUE boiler, 80 cents go toward heating your home’s air; In a 95 AFUE furnace, that number jumps up to 95 cents – a big difference on your monthly bills.
What’s a typical AFUE rating for a furnace? That depends on how old your unit is. Older furnaces were held to considerably lower efficiency standards than they are today, and any furnace will lose efficiency over time – especially if your equipment is not properly maintained by a heating professional.
Here are some efficiency guidelines for typical furnaces according to the U.S. Department of Energy:
As of 2015, the minimum standard AFUE for new furnaces is 80 percent.
Of course, AFUE doesn’t tell the whole heating efficiency story – the energy efficiency of your home, how well you maintain your equipment, the condition of your ducts, and how well your heating equipment was installed all come into play when determining how much heating bang you get for your buck.
For these reasons and more, it always pays to hire a professional to install, maintain, and repair your furnace.
Looking for an energy-efficient replacement for your furnace? We can help! Contact Murray-Heutz Oil and Propane today for a FREE, no-obligation estimate on a furnace installation in Androscoggin County!