There is so much to consider when it comes to running your home.
- Should I get a security system?
- What types of light bulbs meet my lighting needs but are still energy efficient?
- Should I install carpets or hardwood?
As if that’s not enough, include one more thing on the list: When should I replace my heating system?
Your heating unit shouldn’t require continuous attention, but it shouldn’t be taken for granted, either. Ignoring your system could result in indoor air that is loaded with dust or allergens (or worse!), or even an inefficient heating unit that is wasting energy and money with every heating bill.
But how should I know if it’s time to replace my heating system?
The following warning signs can help you determine if you just need a quick tune-up or if it’s time to replace your current heating system.
1. Frequent Repair Costs
It is not uncommon for a heating system to eventually need a new blower or a little love once a year to make sure everything is running correctly, but a well-maintained heater should work without much mending along the way. A few indications that your system may be in need of replacing are below:
- calling the service technician multiple times for the same concern;
- needing several visits during the same heating season;
- constantly accruing bills simply to keep your house comfortably warm.
A general rule to remember: if yearly repair costs reach 50% of the present value of the heater, then it’s likely time to replace your furnace.
2. Energy Efficiency
Are your energy are a little higher than this time last year? That may be a sign that some part of your HVAC system is weakening. Most companies can give you a residential energy audit which can point to easily remedied inefficiencies like weather-stripping around your doors and windows or attic insulation. It may also be the first step in discovering if your heating unit is giving up. Older heating units can be very inefficient, while newer technologies are much more efficient at heating your home. Also, upgrading to a high-efficiency unit could mean tax credits or utility rebates and incentives to help you recoup the cost of a new system.
3. Old Age
Heating units were never designed to last forever. Advanced, more efficient technology is coming out all the time. But how long should your heating unit last? The magic number for a furnace or boiler is 15 years. But keep in mind many old heating units operate at an efficiency of just 65% or worse! A replacement that’s been qualified with the Energy Star rating can be up to 30 percent more efficient, and that’s a difference you’ll notice in your home and your wallet.
4. Excessive Noise
If you have to raise your voice to talk because your unit is so loud, that could be a indication that your duct system is undersized and too much air is being pushed through too small an opening.
Other noises like squealing, jolting, clanking, or banging could be signs of a mechanical matter. It could be as simple as a worn belt, but it may mean an internal component of your unit has loosened or come completely detached.
Today’s latest products work more silently than ever. Often you’ll have to really play close attention to even know that they’re running. If noise pollution is an issue for you, that may be reason enough to upgrade to better equipment.
5. Temperature and Comfort Issues
If you are having to constantly bump up the heating system to keep things in the house comfy, that should be a major warning that it’s time to re-evaluate your furnace. There are several factors that could cause this issue - it may be rectified with a new thermostat that allows you more control – so before you assume that you’re in for a whole new heater, give some attention to your thermostat.
6. Humidity Issues
In the winter, low humidity makes the air inside your home feel colder than it is, often tricking you into hiking up the thermostat. Common issues when the humidity is too low are dry air, sore throats, and chapped skin. Low humidity can even negatively impact hardwood floors and furniture. Today’s best heating equipment helps to keep this precious balance right where it should be, adding or removing moisture before it ever enters the heating unit.
7. Air Quality Issues
Several issues that don’t directly relate to temperature can be improved significantly with an expertly designed and properly installed heating unit. If you are experiencing issues with household odors, airborne allergens, such as pollen and pet dander, bacteria, ozone, and even plain old dust, consulting an expert heating system contractor can start you on the road to resolving them.
So you do all your investigating and decide you do need a new heating unit, or you want to upgrade your furnace to high-efficiency technology, replace your home’s ductwork, or do a total overhaul of the entire system, call Bob Brown Service Experts today for a free, no-obligation Home Comfort Analysis.