Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency is often overlooked when shopping for tankless water heaters but can factor into hundreds or thousands of dollars in savings over the system’s life. There are many factors to consider when deciding on the right tankless water heater for your home.

  • Is it the right size?
  • Will it provide enough water to heat water for my whole home?
  • Do I want an electric or gas tankless water heater?

We look to buy tankless water heaters because they are more convenient and generally cheaper to use. Understanding what the Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency results in you will be saving money and energy.

Tankless Experts Inc. strives to offer professional tankless water heater installations and products. We can work to educate and help you make the most informed decision for your household. Let our experience and expertise work for you. We offer a variety of high AFUE-rated products certified by our staff.

What is AFUE?

An important term to understand while shopping for your ideal system is annual fuel utilization efficiency. Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) is the rating of a tankless water heater’s energy proficiency when in use. The higher the AFUE rating the more energy efficient the system will be.

Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency measures a gas unit’s energy efficiency. AFUE is associated with and measured for all heating equipment that uses natural gas for its primary fuel energy. AFUE works by measuring the required energy for heating and comparing fuel energy consumed by the system. Effectively, determining the fuel efficiency of the gas-powered system.

AFUE is represented in a percentage. This rating demonstrates the percentage of the fuel input used in the heating process. If a unit has an AFUE rating of 90%, you can understand that unit will convert 90% of all fuel types into heat energy. These percentages illustrate the unit’s percentage of fuel converted into heating energy.

What AFUE Means to Energy Savings?

AFUE can be visualized in some real-world comparisons. Our example earlier of a 90% AFUE rating can be used again here. Energy bills are the accumulation of the energy used by heating units. A 90% AFUE rating means 90% of your total energy costs are used by your heating unit. 10% of the money spent is lost in the unit’s operating costs. Simply, $0.90 of every dollar is properly used for heating the water within your home. 100% efficiency is hard to reach with a gas tankless water heater, but being sure your system has the highest AFUE rating possible will save money in the long run.

High-rating AFUE water heaters can be more costly than less efficient units on the market. However, if your budget allows, a higher short-term expense can be a cumulative saving in the long term. Spending extra now to purchase a more efficient unit or upgrade the entirety of your system can result in lower energy bills month to month.

“Canadians use an average of 75 litres of hot water each at home every day—for washing dishes and clothing, cleaning and showering or bathing. Water heaters account for 17.2% of the energy used in the average Canadian home, and 5.7% of the energy used in the average commercial or institutional setting. It’s important to remember the cost of energy to operate a product over its lifetime is just as important as its purchase price. For water heaters, the operating costs are calculated by factoring in the size and type of unit, the energy source, and the equipment’s energy efficiency.”

What is Not Covered by AFUE?

Tankless water heaters use 2 main energy sources, gas and electricity. AFUE only measures the energy efficiency of the gas used within a system. Some gas-powered units may utilize small amounts of electricity, but this energy output is not factored into any AFUE rating. Tankless water heaters that use electricity as the sole energy for heating have separate ratings to better represent the type of fuel used. All heat units are measured, but AFUE it is important to understand the rating is only required for heat units using natural gas or propane.

As you know, AFUE is all about heating efficiency. All heating equipment is not 100% efficient. A major loss in efficiency is lost as heat dissipates while travelling through the ducts and pipes of a heat unit. AFUE measures the efficiency of the fuel to heat comparison. Heat loss is another factor of energy efficiency. Loss of heat has a major effect on energy savings. Having a water heater with a high AFUE rating can be undone by inefficiencies in the rest of the system.

When it comes to finding the right tankless water heater solution for your situation, trust the industry leaders. Tankless Experts is dedicated to offering informed advice, an affordable water heater option, and solutions based on your unique needs. We carry and service various types of tankless water heaters capable of covering and size room or home. Contact us today for more information and a free, no-obligation estimate!