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Are High-efficiency Furnaces Worth It?

Updated: Apr 26

Noticing that your house isn’t warming up like it used to? If so, your furnace may be due for an upgrade. Although furnaces can make it to 20 years old, Energy Star recommends that the 15-year mark is when to start seriously considering a new furnace–and sure enough, if you’re in the market for a new furnace, you’ve seen the term “high-efficiency” being thrown around quite a bit. What does that mean? Is it worth it?

Roof top package unit HVAC Air Conditioning Unit
High-efficiency package unit air conditioner installation by Tri-Point Refrigeration, Inc

What is a high-efficiency furnace?

By definition, a high-efficiency furnace is one that has an AFUE rating of 90% or above. AFUE, meaning Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency, measures the amount of heat a furnace can produce from the amount of fuel that it consumes. When a furnace has a high AFUE rating, that furnace ultimately uses considerably less energy to warm up your home.

What are the benefits?

The overarching theme of how a high-efficiency furnace benefits you is definitely the savings. These newer and more efficient models use significantly less energy to heat your home when compared to older models. Nowadays, the standard AFUE in modern furnaces sits at about 80%, whereas older ones sit around 56%-70%--quite a bit different when it comes to energy usage. An energy-efficient furnace means lower heating bills and reduced greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels. In addition, new high-efficiency furnaces tend to be much quieter than older models (and some newer modern ones that are not energy-efficient!) due to their ability to work more on less energy.

High-efficiency furnaces also boast healthier air quality, as new models come with an increasingly better filtration system to capture pollutants before they can get into the home. If your home tends to generate dust or you or your family members suffer from respiratory issues like asthma or COPD, a high-efficiency furnace can do you some good.

Lastly, high-efficiency furnaces are better for the environment, as they use significantly less fuel to heat your home. With high AFUE ratings, you can expect one of these new furnaces to consume much less energy, which isn’t only good for your wallet, but a little gentler on the environment as well.

What’s the cost?

The cost of a new, high-efficiency furnace depends on a variety of factors, including the size and type of your home, the efficiency rating you choose for your new furnace, and whether or not you have existing ductwork. However, when it comes to energy savings, there is no question that high-efficiency furnaces are worth it.

High-efficiency furnaces use less energy than standard models to heat your home at all temperatures. This means that they save money on utility bills even if the purchase price is higher than other models. In fact, Energy Star estimates that homeowners who replace old units with new high-efficiency ones can experience on average 11% higher efficiency rates than those who don’t use energy-efficient models! That’s a significant amount in any homeowner’s budget—and over time it can really help a homeowner rack up the savings.

When it comes to upfront costs, the price can vary depending on your budget, installation costs, and whether or not you have the proper ductwork in place. On average, a new, high-efficiency heater can run a homeowner for about $2,000. On the lower end of the spectrum, $700 could suffice, while those who choose the more expensive options will be looking at about $3,500. With this wide range of costs, high-efficiency furnaces can truly fit into any budget.

The bottom line

High-efficiency furnaces are not only a nice upgrade for your home (especially as winter rolls around!), but they also can save you lots of money over the furnace’s lifespan, with its low energy consumption and, well, high efficiency! Although they can pose higher up-front costs (like any new machine), in the end, a high-efficiency furnace is worth it.

Call us

Interested in a new furnace, high-efficiency or not? Need an estimate, an installation, or simply a point in the right direction? Get in contact with one of our certified technicians today! Don’t hesitate in giving us a call here at Tri-Point Refrigeration. We’re happy to hear from you and are excited to help you along the way.

For a direct line to any of our employees ready on the line to help you, please call…(512) 651-4565 for our Austin, Texas community (806) 686-0050 for our Lubbock, Texas community. Or check out our website at



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