Natural Gas Furnaces for Your Home

Natural gas furnaces are used in homes for heating.  Furnaces can be ducted to provide uniform air distribution throughout a house or they can be purchased to heat a single room.  Their efficiencies have gone up impressively, with efficiencies going up as high as 98%.  It is a good idea to buy the higher efficiency furnaces, even if they cost more, since you will save energy, lower your heating bills, and have the opportunity to get incentives in the form of cash or credit from your local utility company

Furnace Efficiency

Furnace efficiency is measured by the Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) rating.  This rating takes into account the efficiency of the furnace over a specific heating season (like winter for example).  The difference between the AFUE and the more common thermal efficiency is that the thermal efficiency is taken at a single standard condition and the AFUE is taken over an entire heating season.  The AFUE rating gives a more practical and real-life representation of how the furnace will perform.  Gas furnaces are categorized as either condensing or non-condensing.  Condensing furnaces are more energy efficient, with AFUE ratings of over 90%.

How Much Does a Furnace Cost?

Natural gas furnaces used for home heating can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $5,000.  The installation price will vary depending on whether you want to install it yourself or you want to pay a contractor to install it.  For the same heating capacity, expect to pay $1,000 to $2,000 extra for a condensing furnace over a non-condensing furnace.  The extra money is more than worth as you will get the difference you paid back and more in energy savings.  A 15% in energy savings can equate to $150 dollars a year, which means that the difference will be paid back in 5 years.  Since the life expectancy of a furnace is 20 years, a condensing furnace is a wise investment to make.

Learn more about natural gas furnaces and energy efficiency at www.gogreenacademy.com.

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