High efficiency furnaces

You’ve probably heard this phrase banded about – but do you know  what it means? Well,  ‘high’ efficiency basically means that it is over  90% efficient (to compare; a ‘mid’ efficiency runs at under 80%). To  achieve this the equipment must take more heat out of the gas, which is  done by adding a heat exchanger designed to pull the very last bit of  heat, before it is exhausted out of the building. In doing this, the gas is  cooled so much that some of the water in the gas is condensed, which  is why newer heating systems need to have a drainage system. The  cooler temperatures in the gas also mean that venting can be plastic  PVC and, instead of needing a chimney, can now be expelled out the  side of the building.

Due to the water that’s produced by these systems special care needs  to be taken during installation (for example, all vent piping must be  sloped back to the furnace so the water can drain away). As you can  see from the attached video (taken on a cold day) the exhaust from a  high efficiency furnace is very similar to a dryer vent.


Caledonia Integrated Services is an Energy Management, HVAC and Electrical company, serving Vancouver and BC area.
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