Converting Your Furnace from Standard Efficiency to High Efficiency

By: Brian Schutt  |  March 5, 2015

What Homeowners Need to Know Regarding Your Energy Bill, Your Furnace and Converting to a High Efficiency.

While admittedly a hot button environment issue, fracking has enabled domestic energy companies like Duke & IPL access to previously untapped energy resources. Which translates into lower energy costs for you the homeowner on your oil and gas bills. In spite of that, we also know it’s a depleting resource and can fluctuate quickly. While government has significant oversight and regulatory control between utility companies and us as end users, market forces dictate that if production costs of oil and natural gas increase that cost will eventually be reflected in our bills. That’s not even touching on the impact of global demand and the complicated relationship we have with many of the major energy producing states around the world.

In the midst of all that uncertainty, many homeowners are determined to do whatever they can to reduce their energy dependency and environmental impact. With heating and cooling costs making up an average of 50% of overall utility bills, the move from a standard efficiency to a high efficiency furnace is one of the most meaningful upgrades a homeowner can make.

High Efficiency Furnace Chart

4 Things Every Homeowner Needs to Know When Converting To High Efficiency Furnace

1. Flue conversion

Your 80% or less efficiency furnace vents through a metal pipe into a flue (many times inside of the same space as the chimney). This is because this pipe gets very hot. Your high efficiency furnace will vent through 2/3/4 inch PVC pipe, and almost always include a 2nd flue pipe of the same size for intake air. This can involve a construction process, because that PVC can rarely use the same space as your previous metal pipe. Many times this means drilling a hold in a side wall or roof. 

2. Furnace Drainage

This new high efficiency furnace is also called a condensing furnace. Condensing = condensation. That condensation will be expelled from the system into a 3/4 inch PVC line into wherever your current air conditioner drains. Many times this is a floor drain or a sump pit.

3. Reduction of Furnace Noise

It’s important to note your system should be much quieter than what you’re used to. Don’t be surprised. If you’re used to the house shaking when your blower motor kicks on, that’ll likely be gone too. Don’t worry, that actually means your system is working better.

4. Comfort

With the high efficiency blower your system will likely have, your blasts of cold or hot air should be replaced with more consistent and less noticeable comfort. Those blasts of air in the past felt so nice because your home was getting uncomfortable. Rather than going through cycles of comfort/discomfort, your new system is designed to create a more evenly distributed sense of comfort throughout your home. 

There are other technical differences among these furnaces, the above are important experiential differences any homeowner should be aware of before they make the change to a high efficiency furnace.


Have a question about how to save money on your energy bill, give us a call at 317.670.0171 or contact us. Homesense Heating & Cooling’s expert HVAC technicians will install the right furnace for your home in Indianapolis, Zionsville, Carmel, Fishers, or Geist.

 

 

Brian Schutt

About 

is the co-owner of Homesense Heating | Cooling. Born and raised in Indianapolis, he loves the city and its people, and is committed to bringing a servants mindset into the heating and cooling industry. One of the ways he does that is to translate the technical language of HVAC into the manageable and understandable for homeowners.

Have a question? Tweet him and you'll get an answer promptly.

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