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Comfort Solutions Answers Your Furnace Questions

Written by Comfort Solutions HVAC on . Posted in .

Furnaces can be tricky. From maintenance to performance, replacements to repairs, we know everything there is to know about HVAC. To help you better navigate all things furnace related, we’ve answered a few frequently asked questions below.

Q: What terminology should I know before purchasing a furnace?

A: Some important terms to look out for relating to furnace performance:

  • AFUE Rating: Short for annual fuel utilization efficiency rating. It is a measurement used to better understand a furnace or boiler’s efficiency rating. The FTC requires that furnaces display their AFUE rating for transparency. This allows a consumer to easily identify a furnace’s energy efficiency via percentages. The percentages can be broken down into two categories. If the model states that it has a 90% AFUE rating, that means 90% of the energy in fuel is converted to heat. The remaining 10% reflects heat loss.
  • MERV Rating: Short for minimum efficiency reporting value. It is a measurement used to determine a filter’s efficiency at trapping particles. The higher the MERV rating, the better the filter is at trapping particles.
  • ENERGY STAR: A government-approved symbol found on eligible products to denote energy efficiency. Designed to influence consumers to choose eco-friendly and economical products.

Q: Can I perform furnace maintenance on my own?

A: While there are a few maintenance tasks you can perform on your own, we suggest calling a professional for extensive maintenance. However, tasks such as changing and inspecting your furnace filters should be performed regularly. Bigger jobs should be left to a licensed technician.

Q: What can I do to lower my energy bill?

A: Depending on your budget, there are a few different ways you can lower your energy bill, including:

  • Upgrade your thermostat – Non-programmable thermostats are a good choice for someone who likes simple form and function. However, upgrading to a programmable or smart thermostat can save you money in the long run. New thermostat technology can help your furnace operate at maximum efficiency.
  • Inspect your thermostat – If your energy bills appear abnormally high, it could be a sign of a faulty thermostat. If it doesn’t maintain the proper temperature or simply doesn’t turn on, contact us.
  • Lower the temperature – Decreasing the temperature when you aren’t at home can make a significant impact on your energy costs. Shutting the door and vents to unused spaces can also make a difference.
  • Upgrade your furnace – If your furnace is over 10+ years old, it may be time for an upgrade. Fortunately, newer models have higher energy efficiency ratings which means less money spent on bills.
  • Schedule furnace maintenance – Not time for an upgrade yet? No problem. A high energy bill could be a sign that it is time for your yearly tune up. 

Q: What is the lifespan of a furnace? 

A: Typically, furnaces can last anywhere from 10-20 years. Factors such as consistent usage and maintenance will impact how long the furnace lasts. However, you can extend the lifetime of your furnace by changing your furnace filters regularly. In addition, you can lengthen its life expectancy by scheduling a furnace tune up annually.

Q: How does a furnace work?

In its most basic form, a furnace heats air up via a fuel source. Once heated, the air moves through ductwork, ultimately heating up your home. The furnace is controlled through the thermostat. From here, it regulates the temperature of your home. 

Call us today at 610-438-9300 or contact us online to discuss your furnace options. Whether it’s time for a tune up, repair or replacement, we’ve got you covered.