There are only a couple months left for keeping your nose and toes nice and toasty. However, you don’t want to end the season and start the next with an old unreliable furnace.
We have a checklist below to help you determine if it may be time to start getting in touch with one of our HVAC experts to help with some last-minute tune-ups or a new furnace:
1.) Your Furnace Is More Than 15 Years Old.
Have you noticed your utility bills at an all time high? Is your furnace not working at maximum efficiency? If you are beginning to have maintenance issues on your 15 + year old furnace, there is a very likely chance it will need to be replaced.
Furnaces and cars are very similar; the older they are, the more maintenance is needed. Furnaces usually incur the most breakdowns in the last two years of their lives. If your furnace is currently 15 to 20 years or older and you have a repair costing more then 20 percent of a new furnace, you should go ahead and replace it.
Keep in mind no matter the age of the furnace, if the cost to repair is 50 percent or more of the cost of a new furnace, replacing it is a good rule of thumb.
If your furnace is operating with no maintenance or the general tune ups, however you’ve noticed a higher utility bill, there may be a cheaper solution for you. Updating your thermostat to a newer programmable one and/or cleaning or updating your duct system are just some examples of what can be done.
Most reliable furnaces last between 20 and 30 years, with regular maintenance and proper use. However, you can find the recommended lifespan of your furnace in the owner’s manual or by calling the manufacturer with the unit’s model number.
2.) The Rooms Throughout Your Home Are Different Temperatures.
An inefficient and old furnace can result in some rooms being colder or warmer than others. This is likely the result of an old furnace and outdated duct system losing its ability to distribute heat evenly throughout the house.
3.) Your Home Has Soot Around the Registers.
When you spy soot or rust around the furnace or registers, this is a sign your furnace has too much CO2 (carbon dioxide). An older furnace may begin spewing out dust, dirt, or rust particles, which can cause excessive dryness, affecting the walls, wood flooring, furniture, and plants in your house. This could also be bad for your health. If you start experiencing dry eyes and itchy throat, or headaches, it may be time to get in touch with the HVAC experts and consider looking at your options.
4.) Your Furnace Is Extra Noisy.
Furnaces tend to make some noise when they turn on and off, but if those noises start to get progressively louder, it may be time to replace your unit. Hearing noises such as popping, humming, banging or screeching, could be a telltale sign your furnace is nearing the end of its life or that some of the parts within your furnace may need to be replaced or tightened.
The reason for some of these sounds could be:
- Rattling: Unsecured ductwork, loose screws or sheet metal can be the cause of this sound. It may also mean the lower motor is not properly balanced.
- Popping: This sound can happen when parts within your furnace warm and cool in response to temperature changes within your system.
- Humming: Your fan motor may produce electrical humming sounds, but the fan should never be loud or disruptive. If it is, your inducer motor or blower fan motor could be starting to fail.
- Screeching or Squealing: These noises are a sign there is an overall issue with your blower motor or inducer motor. Possible issues could be a loose bearing, deteriorating belt, or an issue with the pulley that holds the belt.
Before shopping for a new furnace, get in touch with one of our expert technicians to help you determine whether replacing the unit is the best option for you.