The heating season may not be as big of a deal here as in other parts of the country, but it’s still something you should be prepared for. That means making sure that you have a working heating system, even if you’re only going to use it a handful of times over the next couple of months. If your current furnace is not up to the task of keeping your home warm this season, it’s a good idea to install a new one now.
You don’t want to have your furnace break down on you just when you need it most. You’re going to need to have a professional evaluate the system to determine whether or not it is nearing the end of its effective lifespan. There are a few signs that you can identify as a homeowner, though, that serve as pretty clear indications that you need a new furnace.
High Heating Bills
Using the furnace more often is obviously going to increase the cost of your monthly heating bills. There’s a difference between that and an unexplained spike in monthly heating costs, though. If your furnace is costing more to operate each month than it should be, you should call a professional to come take a look at it. This could be due to the buildup of years of wear and tear on the furnace finally catching up to it. As the wear on the various parts of the system reaches critical levels, it will start to negatively impact operation. The furnace will operate for longer to compensate for the lost efficiency, which will contribute to higher monthly bills. If this is the source of your higher monthly costs, the only thing you can really do is replace the system.
It’s to be expected that you’ll need to repair your furnace once or twice over the years. If you need to repair the system multiple times a year, though, it’s time to consider replacing it. This often happens due to the parts of the system succumbing to age and wear. The parts begin to fail in rapid succession, forcing you to replace them with increasing frequency. If you need to repair your furnace that often, it is far more cost-effective to just install a new one than to keep replacing your current one a single part at a time.
If you take really good care of your furnace, you can expect it to last right around 10-15 years. That will change a little, depending on individual circumstances, but you shouldn’t expect it to be much further beyond that. If your furnace is older than 15 years, it’s definitely time to replace it with a new system. Older furnaces accumulate a growing list of issues along the same lines as those we’ve already described. It will cost more and more money over time to keep the system functioning, which is just wasted funds that could be put to better use elsewhere.