Purchasing a High-Efficiency Furnace
The efficiency rating should be one of your key considerations when deciding on a furnace for your home. A furnace with a high AFUE rating (95% and up) will mean your unit will return a better value for every dollar spent heating your home. Also, it’s important to look for the ENERGY STAR rating. Furnaces with an ENERGY STAR certification meet Natural Resources Canada’s guidelines to ensure that your unit runs efficiently with less impact on the environment.
Furnaces come in a number of different sizes, types, and with different features suited to different home sizes and layouts, and personal needs. Make sure you consult a local expert to help establish what type and size of forced-air furnace is appropriate for your home and budget.
Once you’ve decided, you can look at additional features that come with your furnace. Many mid-tier and premium tier furnaces come with additional features such as humidity controls and communicative control panels that can diagnose problems and even send data back to a control panel, ensuring a quicker diagnostic process.
- Variable-speed blowers – the furnace will blow at varying speeds, resulting in improved airflow control throughout your home. This also improves efficiency, allows you to heat specific areas of your home as well as improving air quality.
- Zoned heating – This allows you to have control over the temperature in different “zones” of your home. This flow of air is enabled by the opening and closing of special valves (dampers) in ductwork and is usually controlled by the thermostat. A great solution if you want different parts of your home at different temperatures.
- Dual heat exchangers – the heat exchanger is the tubes or coils in the furnace that heats the air. Dual heat exchangers mean more heat is drawn from the burned gas, which improves efficiency and the consistency of temperature in your home.
Price And Overall Value
As mentioned earlier, look out for the AFUE rating. A higher rating might mean more money up front, but in the long run, it’ll often save you money. If you buy a 90% AFUE furnace, you’re only using 90 cents in every dollar towards heating your home. A 98% AFUE rating, on the other hand, means that you’re using 98 cents in every dollar to heat your home!
A higher AFUE saves you money in the long run and is also far better for the environment.
Most furnaces will come with some kind of warranty from the manufacturer. A common base warranty will be 10 years on parts, with higher end units typically having more extensive coverage.
Be aware that some warranties require you need to register for, often in the first 30-60 days after purchasing the furnace, or it will revert to a lower coverage tier.
Good HVAC contractors will also often include a warranty on labour and installation.
The last thing you want is your furnace to be rattling while it heats your home – this will slowly drive you crazy! Most furnaces now include noise-reduction technology and insulation which drastically dampens how noisy they sound.
Check the product description to see whether the furnace includes these features. Look out for “insulation” and solid sounding materials used in the build of the furnace. Variable-speed blowers will also allow the fan to operate at lower speeds when possible, which will reduce the sound output.
Our verified local suppliers based in Newmarket often offer promotions and attractive deals to their customers. Stay informed on current Newmarket and Ontario based deals by following this link.
Government Rebates Available
The Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) (formerly Ontario Power Authority) offer rebates when you purchase a furnace with an air conditioner or a tankless water heater, and there may also be rebates available for installing a new ENERGY STAR high-efficiency furnace.
Popular Furnace Brands
Residents of Newmarket, Ontario are buying units by:
- American Standard