Everything You Need to Know about Energy Efficient Furnaces in Ottawa
Staying warm in Canada’s intense winters is much easier when you have an energy-efficient furnace heating your home. The term “energy efficient” gets tossed around a lot. What does it mean? Is it worth the cost? When you have more questions than answers, it’s time for some help.
Getting the most comfort for your budget is possible with the new advances in technology and reliable manufacturers. The Energy Centre understands that you may not have all the knowledge you need to make the best decision. We are here to help with this guide on energy-efficient furnaces for your Canadian home.
Your Guide to Energy Efficient Furnaces – Maximize Your ROI
What makes furnaces energy efficient?
The idea of energy efficiency stems from the goal of having as little fuel wasted as possible while still heating your home for comfort. Manufacturers strive to build new and better units that consume all the fuel, so your house is warmer while your utility bill stays low. This is done with sealed combustion chambers which means less heat is lost as the burners work.
Some have multi-stage burners that adjust the amount of power the furnace consumes to operate at reduced energy levels when possible. Lastly, variable speed blowers can be adjusted to lower speeds to use less power. Today’s energy-efficient furnaces operate at 90-95% efficiency.
Are high-efficiency furnaces worth it?
You will save money by upgrading to a high-efficiency furnace from your existing one. With less fuel being wasted in the heating process, more of it works at keeping your home warm. There are other considerations, as well. For example, you gain confidence in your heating system during the winter with a new unit. Also, your home will be quieter as high-efficiency furnaces are much quieter than their older counterparts.
Finally, with much less waste, your heating system is better for the environment. Before you take the plunge, speak to a licensed HVAC installer to determine the best size and type of furnace for your home.
What are the top 10 best furnaces in Canada?
You should always want to find the best quality for your investment dollars. There are several leading brands of energy-efficient furnaces on the market. Here are some of the most popular ones in Canada:
- Goodman – A solidly built furnace with a substantial warranty, Goodman is known for its energy-efficient and reliable products. When you have a modest budget, this brand is a top choice.
- KeepRite – You can get a good range of unique features and an excellent warranty with this high-efficiency brand. Their products are an affordable way to keep your home comfortable.
- York – Enjoy an excellent track record of heating homes when you choose York. They have high-efficiency units, and their warranties are fantastic, leaving you with the peace of mind you seek in a furnace.
- American Standard – For those shopping in the mid-range of heating units, you get an extremely reliable furnace with less maintenance and outstanding warranties.
- Bryant – With proper installation and maintenance, your Bryant furnace will give you years of reliable heating. The warranty is limited, so you may want to consider that.
- Amana – A household name in North America since the 1930s, these furnaces have leading-edge technology and excellent warranties.
- Trane – It’s impossible to stop a Trane. At least it seems that way with a company that has been in business for over 100 years. You can get an affordable unit that is also highly efficient and reliable that will last for years.
- Lennox – These premium brand furnaces offer you excellent reliability and efficiency. Their units are some of the quietest on the market and tout an extensive warranty.
- Carrier – As one of the leaders in premium furnaces, Carrier offers high-efficiency furnaces with many innovations and advanced features. Enjoy lower heating bills with consistent comfort.
What is BTU?
The acronym BTU stands for British Thermal Units. It is used to measure thermal energy and has been commonly used since the late 1800s. More specifically, one BTU is the energy needed to heat one pound of water 1 degree Fahrenheit at sea level.
Each fuel type used in a furnace has a BTU rating. For furnaces, it is a measurement of a heating system’s capacity. It tells you how much energy the unit can deliver throughout your home. The higher the number, the more heat that can be produced.
How do you calculate BTUs based on square footage?
There is no one size fits all. To determine the amount of BTUs that will effectively heat your home, you need to account for several factors, such as:
- The size of your home
- The type and quality of existing insulation
- The type and size of your home’s windows
- Where the home is located
- How high your ceilings are
You can use calculators on the Internet to give you an estimate, but your best course of action is to have an HVAC professional inspect your home. They can give you the best options for the furnace size you need to properly (and efficiently) heat your home.
How much more efficient are energy-efficient furnaces?
Today’s technological breakthroughs have resulted in extremely efficient furnaces. Older units may have had a range of 56-70% efficiency. Can you imagine seeing 30-44% of your fuel bills going to waste? When you purchase a new furnace, you can expect to find systems ranging from 80-95% efficient. That is a massive shift in savings, not only for your wallet but also for the environment.
How do I choose the right HVAC supplier?
When the time comes to install a new or repair an older HVAC system, you want to choose a dependable, licensed contractor. Your heating unit includes many parts that move and utilize some form of fuel. You don’t want a general handyman working on it. Here are a few tips to get you started on finding your HVAC supplier:
Look for someone with the appropriate licensing and insurance. If they are doing business correctly, then they will have the proper credentials to reflect their training and abilities to perform.
Ask for references and research companies through Internet reviews. You can ask family and friends for their preferences and even ask the companies on your shortlist for references. Ask questions that give you a feel for the professionalism of the company and its technicians.
Get written, in-person estimates. Refuse to work with a contractor that gives you an estimate over the phone. There are too many factors to be able to spit-ball a price. Instead, expect your choices to come in and inspect your home before providing your price in writing.
Find a contract that offers energy-efficient models. Some contractors have old models sitting in their inventory that they want to get rid of. These inefficient units will leave you with nothing to show in cost savings. Ask for systems that are Energy Star rated.
Get a Free Estimate for a New, Energy Efficient Furnace
Take the time to do your research, and then give us a call. Our team will work with you to find the best make and model to ensure you have year-round comfort in your home. Our licensed and highly-trained technicians will install your new system quickly so you can get back to enjoying your day. We also offer 24/7 emergency repair service. You don’t have to worry about being cold for long when you depend on The Energy Centre.
Contact The Energy Centre to schedule your free in-home estimate for energy-efficient furnaces. Call us at 613.746.7000 or use our online form. Reap the rewards of your investment when you talk to us.
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