How to calculate furnace energy savings?
The first calculation for energy savings is to determine the actual cost of heating your home. Your gas bill is filled with extras such as delivery and surcharges and also the energy used to heat your water. A simple way to break these “extras” out is to use your gas bills from the last 12 months. First take the 3 summer months, June, July and August, and add them up, next divide by 3 to get the average monthly bill in the non-heating season and multiply by 12 to establish how much is spent on natural gas for the whole year on everything except the furnace. Now add up all 12 monthly gas bills and subtract the amount that you figured above for the 12 months of other appliances. This gives you a good idea on what you spent on just space heating for an entire year.
Now if your furnace is 25 years old, it probably has an efficiency rating of 55% AFUE. That means about 55 cents out of every dollar heats the house and 45 cents goes up the chimney. The new high efficiency furnaces are 95% efficient so only 5 cents out of every dollar is wasted out the vent.
Say your last year’s gas bill for just space heating that you calculated above was $2250.00. This may be a common amount in Alberta.
$2250.00 – ($2250.00 x 55%)/95%= Savings/year
$2250.00 – (1302.63) = $947.37 Savings/year
What are the advantages of a variable speed motor?
Variable speed motors typically run at very low speeds, or as I like to suggest they are lazy only working as hard as they need to satisfy the demand required. On continuous setting the motor gently moves the air around the home realizing 3 key benefits.
1) Continuous air movement will minimize hot and cold spots by retrieving air from different areas of the home, mixing and then redistributing a more balanced temperature.
2) With the air continuously and gently moving across the furnace filter, the filter is able to capture the airborne particulate much more efficiently.
3) Whole home humidifiers only work while the furnace fan is in operation, with a variable speed fan this is no longer an obstacle. With continuous air movement the humidifier is able to operate on those milder spring and autumn days when previously it was not possible, keeping your humidity right where you set it.
But the greatest benefits of a variable speed motor are its quiet operation and huge electricity savings. A variable speed motor typically uses about $40.00 in electricity operating 24/7 365 days per year where a non-variable will use $270.00-$450.00.
What is the life expectancy of a new furnace?
Just like a new car, it is very difficult to determine how long a furnace will last. Studies show that the average furnace lasts 15-25 years. This however is a very large spread. How your furnace is installed and the quality of annual service it receives will greatly affect not only its longevity but also its efficiency.
Longevity is always a concern so we recommend choosing a furnace with a long (20 years+) heat exchanger warranty as well as a long (10 year) parts warranty from a known manufacturer. At Friesen’s all our furnaces come with a manufacturer’s lifetime heat exchanger warranty as well as 10 year parts warranty combined with our industry leading maintenance program so your new furnace will still be looking and functioning at peak performance when others have failed.
How long to install a furnace?
Components of a proper installation
- Needs Analysis: The comfort needs of you and your family as well as the characteristics of your home, are unique and need to be understood before a new comfort system can be designed.
- Equipment Sizing: Installing the right size equipment for your home is essential to getting the best performance from your heating equipment and maintaining the comfort you deserve.
- Gas Pressure Settings: Proper gas pressure settings are essential to optimize the performance of your new furnace. Improper settings will significantly reduce your comfort level and the life span of the furnace.
- Optimal Air Flow: By adjusting the air flow while checking the temperature rise and the gas pressures a properly train technician will be able to establish the ideal settings.
- Leak Sealing: By sealing leaks, air gets delivered to its designated location keeping your home more comfortable.
Programmable thermostats have become hugely popular in recent years due to their energy saving benefits, improved comfort control and convenience. Programmable thermostats save energy and money on utility bills, without compromising comfort by allowing residents to set home temperatures according to various different factors.