In 2007 the President signed into law the Energy Security and Independence Act. This gave the Department of Energy(DOE) the ability to regulate regional standards of furnace and air conditioner efficiencies. On Oct 27th 2012 the DOE released the new efficiency standards. Here in Michigan and most northern states, effective May 1 2013 it will become illegal to sell or install a furnace rated below 90% in efficiency.
What does this mean for you? Well if you currently have an 80% furnace that is nearing the end of its life, after May 1st you will be forced to upgrade to a higher efficient model. Where this becomes a problem is locations where it is difficult to install the new style of vent that protrudes through the sidewall of your home instead of a chimney. The higher efficient units also condensate, thus the need for proper drainage is required. Bottom line is that if your furnace is in a poor location for the updated models your going to have a much higher upfront cost to upgrade.
If you have been telling yourself “lets just get one more year out it”. You may want to rethink that decision and pull the trigger on a new 80% furnace before its too late.
Call us at 517.327.6086 for a free proposal.
Update: Jan 17 2013
Good news it appears that the DOE has rescinded the regional standards of 90% efficient furnaces and the May 1st 2013 deadline until the DOE can restructure its rules. So for now if you want to purchase that 80% furnace after May 1 feel free to do so.