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Know Your Heating System Operation Costs

Know Your Heating System Operation Costs
Ongoing Costs of Operation Are Just As Important as the Upfront Costs of Purchase and Installation

Buying a new home heating system is an important investment. The right heating system for your home will not only keep you and your family warm and safe, it will also run smoothly with minimal problems. It could significantly lower your monthly heating costs, and it can even enhance the value of your home. And, since this is an investment you’ll probably live with for years to come, you’ll want to invest wisely.

When shopping for a new heating system, you need to compare not only the initial cost to buy and install the system, but also how much it will cost you, on average, to operate your system.

Make sure you know the energy efficiency of the heating system you are getting. Older, conventional furnaces or boilers can often have an energy efficiency lower than 65%. Today’s more efficient heating systems have efficiency ratings that range from 78% to 97% for forced air systems and 80% to 95% for hot water systems. That’s why upgrading to a new, more efficient heating system has the potential for reducing your monthly heating bills by 20-40%.

The extra money you spend for a high-efficiency heater or heating system will pay you back in energy savings in a relatively short time. For example, suppose you are choosing between a heating system with an efficiency rating of 78% and one with a rating of 93%. The higher-efficiency heating system will cost $500 more, but will probably save you, on average, about $137 each year in operating costs. So you will recover the $500 additional upfront cost in less than five years. That's a big saving.

If you are not planning to stay in the home long enough to reach the payback point, you may wish to choose a lower-priced heating system. But remember, a high-efficiency heating system can be a good selling point when it comes time to sell your home.
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