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Consumers Guide

A Consumers Guide to Purchasing a New Heating System

Efficiency Ratings
Annual Savings: Simple Payback
High-Efficiency Furnaces
High-Efficiency Boilers
Venting Your Heating System
Guarantees and Warranties
Sizing Your Heating System
Choosing a Plumber/Heating Contractor
GasNetworks - High Efficiency Rebate Offer
Receiving a High Efficiency Rebate is as easy as 1,2,3 ...
Upon verification ...

Buying a new heating system is one of the most important decisions you'll ever make for your home!

The following information is designed to help you make an informed decision about choosing a high efficiency heating system that is right for your comfort, energy savings, and your budget.

Efficiency Ratings

The Efficiency Ratings standards are set by the U.S. Department of Energy under the National Appliance Energy Conservation Act of 1987, which became effective January 1, 1992.

All natural gas heating systems have what's called an Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) rating. The rating is expressed in percentages.

Minimum Efficiency Standards
Furnace 78% AFUE
Gas-fired Boilers 80% AFUE
Gas-fired Steam 78% AFUE

The higher the AFUE rating -- the more efficient the heating system -- and the less energy needed to heat your home.

For example, a new, high-efficiency furnace with a 94% efficiency rating provides 94 cents worth of heat from every energy dollar. By comparison, an older, standard efficiency furnace with an efficiency rating of 60%, provides 60 cents worth of energy for every dollar spent.

Annual Savings: Simple Payback

If you install a residential warm air furnace at 90% AFUE vs. 80% AFUE, the estimated annual savings in energy costs is $115 with a simple payback of approximately 3 years*.

*Analysis of annual savings provided by the Consortium of Energy Efficiency, a national non-profit organization consisting of utilities, government agencies and energy efficiency groups.

High-Efficiency Furnaces

Furnaces with efficiencies over 90% are called condensing furnaces and offer the most energy savings.

These furnaces achieve 90% AFUE rating by sending flue gases through a secondary heat exchanger. This device further extracts heat that is usable energy for your home.

Remaining flue gases then exhaust outdoors through special plastic-type vent pipe inserted through the wall of the home. This "direct-vent" piping configuration also draws in outside air for combustion. Since indoor air is not used in the combustion process, cold air leakage (infiltration) is reduced -- an added energy savings.

High-Efficiency Boilers

A boiler can last between 20-30 years, so it is important to choose an efficient model in order to reduce long-term costs. The most efficient boilers forced hot water boilers are considered to have an AFUE rating of 85% or higher.

Venting Your Heating System

Often times the installation of a high efficiency heating system requires changes to your venting system. It is recommended that you consult with your contractor for proper venting methods.

Guarantees and Warranties

A new heating system is a major investment, so make sure you understand the warranties that come with your new equipment.

Parts and labor are usually covered by the manufacturer and installing contractor for the first year. Some brands also offer warranties of two to ten years. High-efficiency furnaces are generally the manufacturer's top-of-the-line products and have longer warranties.

Sizing Your Heating System

Sizing your heating system should always include the help of a qualified heating contractor. A system that is too large can be wasteful and a system that is too small can't provide proper comfort. A qualified heating contractor can help you estimate the heat-loss in your home by evaluating the insulation levels and the square footage of wall, roof and floor space exposed to the outside. Then, using the outdoor and desired indoor temperatures, they can calculate the appropriate capacity for your new heating system, measured in BTUs (British Thermal Units) per hour.

Choosing a Plumber/Heating Contractor

We suggest that you contact several plumber/heating contractors who will inspect your home and offer an estimate. Reliable companies will send an estimator to provide a survey and provide a heat-loss calculation for your home. The contractor should also supply you with a written proposal clearly outlining the work to be done with the agreed upon price and many offer service after the installation is complete.

GasNetworks - High Efficiency Rebate Offer

When you install a high efficiency natural gas furnace or boiler in your home, we will increase the benefits by offering you a rebate check for the following:

Rebate Measure
$400 Warm Air Furnaces Greater or Equal To 92% with Electronic Commutated Motor (ECM)
$600   Warm Air Furnaces Greater or Equal To 94% with Electronic Commutated Motor (ECM)
$800   Warm Air Furnaces Greater or Equal To 96% with Electronic Commutated Motor (ECM)
$500   Natural Gas Hot Water Boiler with an AFUE Rating Greater or Equal To 85%
$1000   Natural Gas Hot Water Boiler with an AFUE Rating Greater or Equal To 90%
$1500   Natural Gas Hot Water Boiler with an AFUE Rating Greater or Equal To 96%
$1600   On-Demand Condensing Unit - Minimum AFUE Rating of 90%
$1000   On-Demand Condensing Unit - Minimum AFUE Rating of 85%
$200   After-Market Boiler Reset Controls - Must be connected to a natural gas boiler
$500   Heat Recovery Ventilator - Excludes portable units

Receiving a High Efficiency Rebate is as easy as 1,2,3....

1. Call 1-800-232-0672 to apply or simply download our forms for your convenience.
2. Purchase a high efficiency heating system.
3. Complete the form and mail it along with a copy of the invoice for the equipment purchased and installation.

Upon verification*....

You will receive your rebate check in the mail.

*All equipment must meet AFUE minimums listed above and application terms and conditions. Program subject to change without notice.