The new residential boiler efficiency standards just went into effect in September, with gas-fired hot water boilers now having to be a minimum of 82 percent AFUE. Other changes required with this slight increase in efficiency is the elimination of a standing pilot, as well as an automatic means to adjust the temperature of the water based on the demand load (often accomplished through the use of an outdoor air reset control).
Many in the industry are welcoming these modifications, noting that sales of higher efficiency boilers have been trending up, so homeowners are already expressing interest in better efficiency. In addition, the changes are small enough that they should not result in large price increases that could cause sticker shock for consumers. And any change in price, noted manufacturers, should be more than offset by decreased operating costs for consumers.