Most home furnaces and heat pumps will last between 20 and 30 years. While this is typical, a person could need a furnace replacement as soon as 15 years. However, age is never a good reason for a new furnace installation on its own. It is not unheard of for a well-maintained unit to be going strong well past 40 years old. Your furnace does not have an expiration date. Nonetheless, there are certain telltale signs that you do need a replacement.
1. Energy Efficiency
Over the last 20 years, furnace efficiency has improved greatly. Switching to a newer heating unit can cut your utility costs and improve your indoor air quality. That said, you do need to consider the cost over the life of the unit. Sometimes, if maintenance costs are not an issue, the environmentally friendly choice is keeping your old unit.
2. Frequent Repairs
The most obvious sign that you need a furnace replacement is frequent repairs. Once your annual maintenance costs start to exceed 10 percent of a new furnace installation, it is time to consider a new one. Most new natural gas furnaces cost around $14,000, and you can expect to pay $5,000 to $7,500 if you at looking at a new heat pump.
3. Heating Costs
There are many reasons why your heating costs are going up. It is not specifically a signal that you need a heating unit. But, if there is a sudden and drastic increase in heating costs, you should have a professional evaluate your unit. The are many internal parts that can wear out and require replacement.
4. Strange Noises
Are you hearing any rattling, popping, or banging when your heating unit turns on? Over time, all furnaces will start making noises. This is a sign of aging and a signal that the unit is approaching the end of its life expectancy. Another sign is if your heater turns on and off frequently.
5. Adjusting the Thermostat
Are you finding that some rooms are always too hot or too cold, forcing to constantly adjust the thermostat? Aging is not the only cause of this issue, but it is one possible explanation. If you are continually tweaking your thermostat’s setting, it is best to have a heating professional perform an inspection.
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