Vent-Free Efficiency FAQ
Q: Is vent-free the most efficient heating appliance option?
A: Vent-free appliances are the most fuel-efficient gas heating products on the market today. All ventless gas appliances are 99.9 percent efficient. Virtually all of the gas or propane burned by the product is converted into room-warming heat.
Q: Isn’t natural gas an expensive fuel option?
A: While prices of all fuels have risen in the past several years, natural gas still provides more heat for the dollar than any other home heating fuel. A direct comparison of costs for different fuel types based on 2006 U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) average unit costs of energy follow.
Q: Doesn’t it cost a lot to run a vent-free heater?
A: It costs pennies per hour to operate a vent-free gas supplemental heating appliance. A typical vent-free fireplace consumes 26,000 BTUs per hour. Assuming the unit operates at peak operation for one hour based on the DOE’s 2006 unit cost of natural gas, it would only cost 36 cents an hour to run the appliance. Operating the appliance for two hours per day for a month and adding the minimal cost of the pilot, the monthly cost would be approximately $26.64 per month.
Note: Most ventless units have thermostats that lower the heat when they reach a pre-set temperature, so these appliances DO NOT operate at peak output all of the time. Consequently, the operating cost of a vent-free appliance equipped with a thermostat is even less than the one given in the example above.
Q: Can you reduce your heating bill by zone heating?
A: Yes. Strategically placing a vent-free gas heater, fireplace, stove or log set in rooms you use most can significantly cut your heating bill. Ventless appliances put the heat where you want it and when you need it, allowing you to turn down the thermostat on your central furnace. According to the American Gas Association, turning the thermostat back 10 to 15 percent for eight hours per day can cut your heating bill by 10 percent.
Q: How much do people save using a ventless product to zone-heat their home?
A: Savings vary depending on your home and how you use your heating appliances. A conservative calculation using DOE average use and cost data for home heating with natural gas shows using the central furnace to supply two-thirds of a home’s heat and a vent-free appliance to provide zone heating in primary living areas results in a 12 percent cut in fuel costs.
Supplemental ventless gas heating appliances provide the heat where it is desired and not throughout the whole house. The greater the use of the vent-free appliance, the greater the savings.
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