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The ABCs of Home Heating – AFUE Ratings

When purchasing a new central furnace or boiler, it’s important to know how efficiently it can convert the energy from natural gas into heat. This is calculated by the annual fuel utilization efficiency, or AFUE. All new furnaces and boilers sold in the U.S. are required to display an AFUE rating so consumers can compare how efficient different models are during a typical heating season.

AFUE is a ratio of the annual heat produced by a furnace or boiler compared to its fuel consumption. So an AFUE of 90% means that 90% of the energy in the fuel is converted to heat while the remaining 10% is dissipated through the exhaust and other inefficiencies.

It’s important to understand that AFUE ratings do not account for all the heat lost though the home’s air duct system and other inefficiencies, which can be as much as 35% of total energy loss. For this reason, when upgrading your heating and cooling system you should have an HVAC technician check your home’s ventilation system to ensure it’s not reducing overall operating efficiency.

Have questions about furnace and boiler efficiency of other heating questions? Call ABC Plumbing, Heating, Cooling and Electric. We’re here to help.

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  • “Have never had such an excellent technician to evaluate our furnace problem. If he hadn't been so thorough, it possibly could have resulted in a carbon monoxide disaster. A true professional!”

  • “After a long day on a Friday (first snow of the year - lots of customers without heat), Dion L came to perform routine furnace inspection and filter change. Dion was courteous, efficient, informed us of all that he was doing, showed us an area of concern and how we…”

  • “Ron S., fixed an electrical short in the attic, which prevented a fire. He rewired the attic thru the bedroom ceiling light. He replaced an outside electrical connection, and repaired my ceiling fan. The attic wiring was very crazy. He did an outstanding job figuring it out and fixing the…”

  • “I called other before I call ABC and was giving long wait and schedule time to come out and check the heating system. So I received a message on the web about ABC Plumbing and Heating. So I called the company right away and they said what time would you…”

  • “I am so impressed with Chris and ABC Plumbing, Heating, Cooling. His friendliness honest approach to his Job is remarkable. Thanks Chris for making my day and believing that they are still great honorable people out there.”

  • “Paul B. serviced my furnace yesterday with an inspection and cleaning. He didn't stop there though, I had purchased a new filter for my humidifier on the furnace and he replaced that for me, showed me how to do it in the future and explained how to adjust the humidity…”

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