There are many things to contemplate when it comes to running your home.
- Should I get an alarm system?
- What types of bulbs meet my lighting needs but are going to be energy efficient?
- Should I install carpet or laminate wood?
As if that’s not enough, include one more thing on the list: When should I replace my heater?
Your heating system 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 heater that is wasting energy and money with every energy bill.
But how do I know if it’s time to replace my heater?
The following warning signs can help you determine if you just need a quick service or if it’s time to replace your current heating system.
1. Frequent Repair Costs
It is common for a heating system to eventually need a new blower or a little love once a year to make sure everything is running properly, but a well-maintained heating unit 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 annual repair costs reach 50 percent of the present value of the heating system, it’s most likely time to replace your furnace.
2. Energy Efficiency
Are your energy are a little more expensive than they were last year? That may be a sign that some part of your HVAC system is weakening. Most companies can deliver a residential energy audit which can show you 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 systems can be very inefficient, while newer technologies are much more efficient at heating your home. Also, upgrading to a high-efficiency product could mean tax credits or utility rebates and incentives to help you recoup the cost of your new system.
3. Old Age
Heating equipment were never designed to last forever. Newer, more efficient units are coming out all the time. But how long should your system 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 poorer! 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 checkbook.
4. Excessive Noise
If you are having 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, shaking, bumping, or banging could be signs of a mechanical matter. It could be as straightforward as a worn belt, but it may mean an internal component of your unit has loosened or come completely detached.
Today’s latest systems operate more silently than ever. Often you’ll have to really play close attention to even know that they’re running. If noise pollution is important for you, that may be reason enough to upgrade to more modern equipment.
5. Temperature and Comfort Issues
If you are having to constantly turn up the heating system to keep things in the house cozy, 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 heating unit, give some consideration 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 bumping up the heat. Common grumbles when the humidity is too low are dry air, sinusitis, 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 HVAC system.
7. Air Quality Issues
A number of 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 or pet dander, bacteria, ozone, and even plain old dust, consulting a professional 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 heater, 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 McKinley Heating Service Experts today for a free, no-obligation Home Comfort Analysis.