What to Expect
At Air Makers, we go a step further to ensure you are always working with an experienced team of technicians who are factory-trained and equipped to handle all aspects of your furnace needs. Our services include:
- Installing furnaces in designated locations and making sure they are secured properly
- Following installation guidelines on specific brands and models
- Completing all the plumbing and electrical work during installations and repairs
- Verifying that all the connections do not leak
- Testing everything to ensure the new or repaired furnace is working according to the manufacturer’s standards
We are the number one choice when it comes to the installation and repair of Lennox, Carrier and Goodman furnaces. Our team will guarantee your complete satisfaction when it comes to the installation, repair and servicing of furnaces.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why should you replace your old furnace?
There are four key reasons why you may want to replace your existing furnace.
1. Your furnace requires extensive repairs, and you have had it for over 10 years. When repairs are not justifiable, replacing the furnace is the right step forward.
2. Your home was red-tagged by a licensed gas fitter technician.
If you recently received a ‘Type A’ Red Tag, this means you cannot use your existing heating system. The gas technician will, in this case, shut gas off. It is, however, wise to get a second opinion prior to acting on the report. There have been scare tactics used to force homeowners to buy new HVAC systems. A second opinion will help you know if a replacement is unavoidable.
If the Red Tag you received is legit, you have to weigh your options to determine if replacing the unit will be cheaper than repairing it.
At times you get the Red Tag at the worst time. If winter is lingering, you will be forced to rush the process of getting repairs or finding a replacement. To avoid headaches later on, you must never rush the process. Be proactive and start shopping for a new furnace early and with the help of an experienced furnace technician.
3. Your Furnace is very old.
A heating system has a lifespan of between 15 and 25 years. Therefore, at Air Makers, we recommend that you replace your furnace with a high-efficiency one at least once every two decades.
4. Your furnace operating and repair costs are too high.
When the gas bills and hydro bills start skyrocketing, it is time to start shopping for a furnace from a trusted HVAC company.
Taking too long to replace your old furnace will only cause you to keep spending more than you should on heating. If you are in Scarborough and have noticed any of the four problems, it is time to start shopping for a new furnace. Refrain from taking shortcuts, more so in your search practices. If you feel rush or incompetent to find the right furnace, engage the services of a professional. Air Makers has a team that is committed to helping you find the ideal furnace for your home.
Is Natural Gas becoming Scarborough’s #1 Choice of Furnace Fuel Today?
The cost of natural gas has been going down steadily over the years. You can view the historical natural gas rates here. The low prices are why people are turning to natural gas furnaces because they are cheaper to operate. For example, in a span of 6 years, from April 2006 to July 2012, the price of natural gas declined from 35c to 9c. You can take a look at the current price of natural gas here.
As a result of the low cost of natural gas, more and more residents in Scarborough are buying natural gas furnaces to replace the non-natural gas ones. Gas distribution companies are also working harder to supply natural gas and gas meters to homes in Scarborough. As a result, our company gets lots of calls daily from people planning to install a natural gas furnace. If you are in Scarborough and still don’t have a gas meter installed, now is the perfect time to reach out to natural gas companies and get your home connected. You will enjoy myriad incentives, which include gift cards, cash incentives and free installation.
With the low cost of natural gas and the entry of efficient furnaces that use natural gas, there is no better time to switch to natural gas than now. In addition, switching to natural gas will help you see a significant decline in your utility bills.
Even with a natural gas furnace installed, you must never forget that the blower motor will still use electricity. So take a look at the hydro costs that will be incurred when operating the blower motor of the furnace you are considering.
What is the Right Size Furnace for My Scarborough Home?
While you now understand the importance of replacing your old furnace with a high-efficiency one, the next step will be finding the furnace that will meet your heating needs. The right furnace should neither be too big nor too small for your home.
The main thing you have to consider in a furnace is its energy output. How much energy output will be needed to heat your home? You can get answers to this question in this post on furnace and A/C sizing guide. The page covers the points you should consider when choosing the best size of furnace for your home. It also looks at the factors you must consider when shopping for a furnace.
You will be surprised to know that the majority of furnaces installed in Canadian homes are oversized. Therefore, it is crucial that you find the proper size furnace. A furnace that is too big or too small will cause problems. You can use this sizing guide chart to determine the correct size furnace based on your home’s square footage and age.
What Features Must You Consider When Comparing High-Efficiency Furnaces?
As aforementioned, to find the right size furnace, you must calculate the amount of heat output you need to heat your building. You then need to review several furnace models that fall within your budget. However, it is good to remember that matching a furnace to a budget doesn’t just focus on the initial buying cost. You must look at the value you will earn back when operating your desired furnace. You have to think of a furnace as an investment; how much will it help you earn back?
Here is a scenario to help you get a better understanding. You have two furnaces that cost $2,000 and $2,400, respectively. While the initial cost is high, the $2,400 furnace offers you a saving of $150 every year. This means the furnace has a payback period of $400/$150 = 2.7 years. Any payback that enables you to earn back your initial investment in 5 years is an excellent investment. With the $2,400 furnace, you will be able to recover the $400 difference within 2 years and 8 to 9 months. Therefore, you will be saving a total of $150 every year when using the $2,400 furnace.
On the other hand, if you only get to save $50 every year, you will take 10 years to recover the difference. In this case, going for the $2,000 furnace may be the right move.
Even with the above information in hand, you still need to make more considerations to find the furnace that will be perfect for you. Needless to say, it is hard to put a price on comfort. However, there are a couple of things you can consider to find the right furnace.
When shopping for a furnace, there are about 4 key features and factors that will help you determine if the option you are going with will end up being an economical investment.
4 main factors influence the operational cost of a high-efficiency furnace. You should start by considering the cost of a complete installation plus HST.
- AFUE rating.
- Type of blower used by the furnace.
- Type of inducer motor.
- Rebate eligibility on your selected furnace.
The next thing you need to do is perform a cost analysis that will determine the economic aspect of your choice and make sure the decision made is based purely on an economic point of view.
Knowing the features and functionalities you need in a furnace will help pick the best furnace for your home. You need to look at the following:
- Number of heating stages; single-stage, two-stage, three-stage or true modulating.
- ECM blower motor.
- ECM inducer motor.
It is also wise to make these two considerations before installing a high-efficiency furnace:
- Availability of parts warranty and labour warranty.
- Rebates availability on the selected furnace.
How Much Does It Cost to Install a New Furnace?
If you are in Scarborough, you can take a look at our pricing on Goodman Furnaces here. Carrier and Lennox brands limit us from offering pricing online. Feel free to contact us now for a free, no-obligation in-home estimate.
What Does AFUE Mean, and Why is it Important?
Although a furnace requires electricity to run the inducer motor and the blower motor, we are only focusing on the source of fuel that is used to heat the furnace when it comes to AFUE. That fuel is natural gas.
AFUE is an abbreviation for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency. It has a rating of 0 to 100%. According to Canadian government regulations, a furnace is considered to be a high-efficiency one if it has an AFUE rating of 94%. Before this, the high-efficiency rating was 90%, then it went to 92%, and now it stands at 94%.
Do you know what the AFUE of your furnace is? At times the AFUE rating is not written on a furnace. In this case, you need to calculate it using the information on the sticker of your furnace. AFUE is the OUTPUT heating power/INPUT heating power. You can find both Output and Input values on the furnace. However, if your current furnace is more than 20 years old, you can expect the AFUE to be 70% or even lower. The AFUE goes down over time. A 25-year-old furnace that has an AFUE of 70% may now have an AFUE of 60%. That is why it is highly recommended to replace a furnace once every 20 years.
To better understand the meaning of AFUE, we need to look at it in terms of money. For a furnace that has an AFUE of 60%, it means for every dollar you spend in heating, 60 cents will go to heating, and 40 cents will be lost. This shows why it is important to go for a furnace with an AFUE closer to 100%. The Infinity Carrier Model 59MN7A, for example, has an AFUE rating of 98.5%. This means you will only waste 1.5 cents for every dollar spent on heating. If you replace your old furnace with an AFUE of 60% with the Infinity Carrier Model, which has an AFUE of 98.5%, you will save 38.5 cents on each dollar you spend on heating.
What Do the Number of a Furnace’s Heating Stages Indicate and Why are they Important?
Most of the furnaces installed in Scarborough are single-stage furnaces. If you are reading this, you probably want to know if any benefits come with having a multi-stage operation. The answer is yes.
When a furnace has a multi-stage operation, it usually has a valve that regulates the flow of gas into the burner and heat exchanger. With a single-stage furnace, the gas flows at 100% when the furnace is switched on. This is irrespective of how many degrees have to be increased.
A 2-stage furnace has a thermostat. When temperatures fall below the set temperature on the thermostat, the furnace lights up on a lower heating stage. This is usually 60% of gas flow. If the desired temperatures are not achieved in 10 to 16 minutes, the regulator opens up to allow gas to flow at 100%. The concept is the same for a 3-stage furnace. The only difference is that a 3-stage furnace has three settings: 40%, 60% and 100%. Although they are not true modulating furnaces, 3-stage furnaces are described as modulating furnaces.
A true modulating furnace has several settings: 40 to 50 settings. The settings have small increments, which start at 30%. An example of a true modulating furnace is the Carrier’s INFINITY 98. It is the only furnace on the market that modulates down.
Taking a look at a scenario can help you get a better understand of the three options. If you own a single-stage furnace and the temperature on your thermostat reads 20C, and the furnace is off, you may want to adjust the thermostat to 21C if you are feeling chilly. When this happens, the furnace lights up with the gas valve opening up fully. The furnace lights up at full capacity to increase the desired 1C. As a result, it will tend to get hot, and the thermostat may read up to 23C by the time the furnace is turning off. The temperatures will then drop to 21C and then further below 21C, and the furnace will light up again, and the process continues. As you can see, the main drawback with the single-stage furnace is temperature fluctuations due to the lack of control over the gas flow.
If you own a single-stage furnace, you have most likely noticed the issue of temperature fluctuations. The issue can be solved by installing a multi-stage furnace. Multi-stage furnaces increase temperatures gradually. Multi-stage furnaces enable you to increase the temperatures gradually. The more stages a furnace has, the more control you will have to attain desired temperatures. The best thing is everything happens gradually—no more temperatures going above the set range on the thermostat.
Multi-stage furnaces offer two key benefits:
- Better temperature control: Gradual temperature changes ensure there are no temperature fluctuations.
- The furnace is quieter when operating: The furnace will not need to run at full capacity, so the furnace will be quieter. A low gas flow rate has always been linked to lower noise. When gas flows at 100%, there will be increased vibrations which lead to more noise.
We are very happy about the Carrier multi-stage furnace. The furnace uses a patented technology called adaptive logic. Contact us now to find out more about this technology.
Misconceptions on the Number of Heating Stages and Energy Saving
The first fact you need to understand is that having multiple furnace stages does not affect its efficiency and the rate at which it uses gas. You still require the same amount of gas to heat a house to the desired temperature. The only difference is that a single-stage furnace uses more gas within a shorter time to achieve the desired temperature. For multi-stage furnaces, the furnace in the lower stage will still use the same amount of gas as the single-stage furnace to raise the temperatures by the desired degrees. Therefore, fuel consumption for multi-stage and single-stage furnaces is the same.
How Many Different Blower Motors Are Used in Furnaces in Scarborough?
Furnaces blowers can be placed in 3 categories:
- PSC Blowers – Single Speed
The PSC blowers rely on AC city electricity and use it in AC form. They work at the same frequency. When you compare them with blower motors from 20 years ago, PSC blowers are at least 30% more efficient. Although they meet their purpose, the drawback with PSC blowers is that they are loud and don’t maximize comfort.
- ECM X13 – Multi-Speed Motors
ECM (Electronically-Commutated Motors) convert AC power to DC. The advantage of DC is that it has a lower and more efficient power consumption. The use of DC power also brings the benefit of modifying the motor speeds. You will get variable speeds on this motor. While not true-variable, you get 4-speed settings. The motor is also twice as energy-efficient as a PSC single-speed blower. They also stand out in that they work in low heating and speed stages.
- ECM – True Variable Speed
This motor is four times more energy-efficient than the ECM X13. It also has multiple speed settings, which can be increased in tiny increments. The Carrier’s INFINITY furnace models use the ECM motors.
Operational Cost Comparison Between These Motors
Let’s assume running your old blower motor 24/7 for an entire year leads to a cost of $600 in hydro bills. Installing a furnace with a single-speed blower will cause the costs to drop by $400. If you install the ECM X13 blower motor, that cost will go further down to $200. A true variable speed ECM will bring your hydro costs to $40.
It is good to note that the inducer motors can also be ECM. Also referred to as the ventor motor, the inducer motor can drive burnt flue gas out of a high-efficiency furnace away from your home. However, ECM inducers are much quieter and a lot more efficient.
For more details about the ECM motors, you should take some time to read about Carrier’s COMFORTHEAT technology. You will learn how it improves the cold and hot spots and offers a quieter operation.
What are the Warranty Options on Furnaces in Scarborough?
There are several warranty options available. Some manufacturers provide extended warranty options, with the norm being a 10-year manufacturer part’s warranty. Your contract will also mention a labour warranty which a contractor from an HVAC company offers. The equipment, in many cases, doesn’t have a factory labour warranty. That is why the contractor provides a labour warranty. The most reasonable labour warranty is for 1 or 2 years.
While a warranty that covers an extended period is great, you have to note that it is unrealistic for anyone to offer a 5 to 10-year labour warranty with no measures to ensure proper furnace maintenance. So be wary when you are offered a 5 to 10-year labour warranty without any form of obligation in regards to maintenance. Take time to read and understand the fine prints to know what an extended warranty covers.
Knowing where each of the warranties you are getting is coming from is also important. Is the warranty being offered by the installing company or the manufacturer? Manufacturer warranties are the most credible. To get a manufacturer labour warranty, you will be required to pay extra, and this has to be done before buying and installing the HVAC.
Always ask about the warranty that is available for the Heat Exchanger. A lifetime factory parts warranty is currently the norm. The warranty covers both primary and secondary heat exchangers.
Air Makers Inc. offers a basic warranty package that includes the following:
- 10-year warranty on parts from the manufacturer.
- Lifetime warranty on parts on both the primary and secondary Heat Exchangers from the manufacturer.
- 10-year labour warranty from Air Makers Inc. At Air Makers, a labour warranty that extends more than 2 years will attract chargeable annual maintenance and checkup starting in the third year. The annual fee is $80.
Are there any Rebates Available When You Replace an Old Furnace with a High-Efficiency Furnace in Scarborough?
The Ontario Power Authority rebate is the main rebate program available. The rebate is offered by the HVAC contractors who are HRAI members. Replacing your furnace with a high-efficiency furnace that has ECM motors will earn you a rebate of $250. Starting December 15th, the manufacturer warranties are all void.
Are Fire Furnaces Safe?
A fire furnace is very safe. These furnaces are taken through stages of rigorous testing to ensure they don’t have any flaws. Most of them also shut down when no flame is burning it off. However, as a precaution, it is highly recommended to have a fire extinguisher on-site as well as our contacts for when there is an emergency.
Why Should You Trust Air Makers with the Installation and Repair of Your Furnace?
At Air Makers, we pride ourselves on being the most trusted source for affordable solutions for cooling and heating in Scarborough. Our reputation is untarnished. We work with clients in both residential and commercial settings.
Our excellent services are backed by the numerous awards we have won back-to-back when installing HVAC equipment in Scarborough and the surrounding areas since 2013.
How Do I Clean My Fire Furnace Safely?
A fire furnace should be inspected and cleaned properly at least once every year. Start by turning the furnace off. Then, gently brush and vacuum dust from the logs. There are also special furnace glass cleaners you can buy from the stores. Next, use a wet piece of cloth to wipe the interior part of the furnace.
Is it Safe to Install a Fire Furnace if you Have an Underlying Medical Condition?
Yes. Provided there is proper ventilation, the fire furnaces are designed to be safe for the whole family. You must also avoid leaving your furnace burning overnight. There is also no harm in consulting a doctor before proceeding with installing a fire furnace if you have a medical condition.