There is so much to consider when it comes to taking care of your home.
- Should I get a security system?
- What types of fixtures meet my lighting needs but are still energy efficient?
- Should I install carpets or tile?
As if that’s not enough, add one more thing to the list: When should I replace my heater?
Your heating unit shouldn’t require constant 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 system that is wasting energy and money with every heating bill.
But how can 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 maintenance visit or if it’s time to replace your current heating unit.
1. Frequent Repair Costs
It is common for a heater to eventually need a new blower or a little love once a year to make sure everything is running properly, but a well-maintained heater should work without much mending along the way. A few indicators that your system may be in need of replacing are below:
- calling the service technician repeatedly for the same concern;
- needing numerous visits during the same heating season;
- constantly spending money just to keep your house comfortably warm.
A general rule to remember: if yearly repair costs reach half of the present value of the heating unit, it’s most likely time to replace your furnace.
2. Energy Efficiency
Are your energy are a little more expensive than you remember them being? That may be a sign that some part of your heater 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 deciding 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 system could mean tax credits or utility rebates and incentives to help you recoup the cost of the new system.
3. Old Age
Heating units were never designed to last until the end of time. 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 systems 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 percent more efficient, and that’s a difference you’ll notice in your home and your wallet.
4. Excessive Noise
If you are having to raise your voice to talk because your heater 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, shaking, clanking, or banging could be signs of a mechanical problem. It could be as straightforward as a worn belt, but it may mean an internal component of your unit has loosened or come completely separated.
Today’s latest units function more silently than ever. Often you’ll have to really pay attention to even know when 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 furnace 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 items 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 heating system, 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, congestion, and chapped skin. Incorrect humidity can even negatively impact hardwood floors and furniture. Today’s best heating equipment helps to keep this important 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 or pet dander, mold, ozone, and even plain old dust, consulting an expert heating system contractor can start you on the road to fixing them.
So you do all your research and decide you do need a new heating unit, or you want to upgrade your furnace to more efficient technology, replace your home’s ductwork, or do a total rebuild of the entire system, call Golden Seal Service Experts today for a free, no-obligation Home Comfort Analysis.