There is so much to worry about when it comes to running your home.
- Should I get a home alarm system?
- What types of fixtures meet my lighting needs but are still energy efficient?
- Should I install carpet or tile?
And if that’s not enough, include one more thing on the list: When should I replace my heater?
Your heater 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 utility 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 unit.
1. Frequent Repair Costs
It is normal for a heating system to eventually need a new belt or a little TLC once a year to make sure everything is running correctly, but a well-maintained heating system should work without much fixing along the way. A few indications that your system may be in need of replacing are below:
- calling the service technician repeatedly for the same problem;
- needing multiple visits during the same heating season;
- constantly accruing bills just to keep your house comfortably warm.
A general rule to remember: if annual repair costs reach half of the present value of the heating unit, it’s likely time to replace your furnace.
2. Energy Efficiency
Are your heating are a little more than you remember them being? That may be a sign that some part of your HVAC system is weakening. Most companies can deliver 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 determining if your heating unit is in need of replacing. Older heating units can be very inefficient, while newer systems 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 the new system.
3. Old Age
Heating systems were never designed to last until the end of time. Better, more efficient systems are 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 furnaces operate at an efficiency of just 65 percent or less! A replacement that’s been qualified with the Energy Star rating can be up to 30% more efficient, and that’s a difference you’ll notice in your home and your bank account.
4. Excessive Noise
If you have to raise your voice to talk because your heating unit is too 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, clinking, or banging could be signs of a mechanical issue. It could be as easy 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 soundlessly than ever. Often you’ll have to really give attention to even know if 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 heater to keep things in the house cozy, that should be a major red flag that it’s time to re-evaluate your furnace. There are several things 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 turning up the temperature. Common issues when the humidity is too low are dry air, sore throats, and chapped skin. Low humidity can even negatively impact wooden 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 system.
7. Air Quality Issues
Many issues that don’t directly relate to temperature can be improved significantly with an expertly designed and properly installed heating system. 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 research and decide you do need a new heating system, or you want to upgrade your furnace to high-efficiency technology, replace your home’s ductwork, or do a total renovation of the entire system, call Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning today for a free, no-obligation Home Comfort Analysis.