As the weather turns colder and the days grow shorter, many homeowners are thinking about the best way to keep their homes warm this winter. Furnaces are the most common home heating system but advances in boiler designs have made them contenders as well. The experts at Blue Valley Energy in Longmont can help you decide on the best method for heating your home, be it a boiler, furnace or geothermal system.
Technological advances have made boilers, sometimes called condensing furnaces, the highest performing heating system available. In standard furnaces, a significant amount of heat is lost during combustion. The difference in boilers is that this excess heat is captured by a second heat exchanger to optimize efficiency. According to Anita Alvarez on Angie’s List, “The secondary exchanger allows exhaust gases to cool, and transfers latent heat that it gives off during vaporization of the gases.”
Benefits of a Boiler over Furnaces
- Better Efficiency: Condensing boilers receive the highest AFUE, or annual fuel utilization efficiency, ratings. The maximum level that noncondensing units can reach is 90% AFUE while boilers get up to 98.5%- which translates into just a little more than 1% loss of energy!
- Increased Safety: The design of condensing boilers completely eliminates the chance that exhaust gases will escape the system and be released back into living spaces. The hazardous gases produced during combustion are sealed into the unit because only air from the exterior of the home is used for the heating process.
- Easier Installation: Since the combustion gases are cooled inside boilers, the exhaust system can be composed of standard PVC pipes that simply exit through a wall. This is a much simpler venting system than traditional furnaces require with their extreme heat operations.
Although condensing boilers cost more upfront than a standard furnace, Energy.gov projects that they will ultimately save homeowners money in fuel costs over the lifespan of the unit. If you are ready to replace your home’s heating system, contact the staff at Blue Valley Energy in Longmont for expert advice and professional installation of your new boiler, furnace or geothermal system.