Furnace Replacement: 9 Telltale Signs It's Time to Replace Your Furnace

Furnace Replacement: 9 Telltale Signs It's Time to Replace Your Furnace

Do you want to get a scare in two sentences? Let's do that for you.

It's a 33-degree winter night and you turn on your heating. The old furnace broke down and you'll have to pay for repairs in cash.

Scary, right? The average furnace repair cost can be between $20-$1500, depending on the damage. Why waste that on an old unit when you can save money on a brand new furnace replacement?

Yes, getting a new unit can be more affordable than repairing what you already have.

How does this work and when should you bring your furnace? Here are 9 telltale signs that it's time to replace your furnace.

1. Sudden Increase in Gas or Electric Bills

Are you curious why your gas and electric shot up all a sudden? Blame your furnace lifespan.

As furnaces gain use mileage, they start losing efficiency over the years. This gets worse if the heater does not get regular maintenance in the off-season. A worn-out heater would need a longer startup to reach the desired temperature.

Check your utility bills. If your bills have shot up but still have the same usage, you're dealing with a furnace near its end of service. Get it replaced!

2. The Furnace Is More than 15 Years Old

The life of a furnace has become longer compared to furnaces in the past. Modern air heating now can have an average lifespan of 15 years, give or take. On the high-end, it's a consensus that 20 years is ranging on lucky.

If the furnace lifespan is closing in years at this range, consider doing a replacement. If you're not doing proper maintenance on the product, have a technician give it a check and provide an assessment for you.

3. Excessive Unfamiliar Noises

One of the telltale signs that there's a problem with your heating system is the noise. Furnace models can be noisy, but the typical sound should be a clean hum of motors. This is normal if it's at the start of the machine.

If the heating unit makes the following noises, you need to have an expert check your unit:

  • Loud humming
  • Rattling
  • Shrieking, screeching
  • Exploding

These sounds are the result of parts deteriorating through constant use. Call a reputable heating and cooling expert for a repair or full replacement.

4. Uneven Room to Room Temperature

Uneven temperatures can be the result of anything from an open window to bad home design.

If this hasn't been the case in the past, check for any blockages in the vents. Remove any obstructions and clean. Make sure that your switch from heat to cooling last spring didn't mess anything up.

Is it still the same? You're dealing with the lifespan of furnace going onto its end. When to replace the furnace? Once your heating cannot reach the essential areas that the family stays a lot.

A furnace should give comfort. Freezing indoor temperatures is not comfortable!

5. Family Gets Sick Out of the Blue

Heaters warm up the air and tend to produce carbon monoxide as a by-product. If your family starts to get sick out of the blue, you're at risk for carbon monoxide poisoning from your heater.

Mild carbon monoxide poisoning symptoms may include tension headaches, dizziness, nausea, and vomiting. Tiredness, confusion, stomach pains, and breathing issues are also problems that can occur.

Carbon monoxide leaks in heater systems come from the heat exchanger. The average lifespan of a furnace, with proper maintenance, should be enough to prevent any damage to the heat exchanger.

Damage in this part means you would want to get a new furnace replacement. Repairs can't lengthen your furnace's lifespan at this point.

6. Yellow Flame in the Pilot Light

The pilot light provides a blue color flame on the burner. This means that the life of a furnace should still last a long while.

Blue flame signifies that the combustion is receiving adequate amounts of oxygen. This can also be the result of carbon monoxide present.

If your heater flame is yellow, this means the lifespan of the furnace is nearing its end. That's because a yellow glow is the telltale sign of a gas problem in your furnace.

Yellow flames have less heat than its blue counterpart, which results in the thermocouple not receiving enough heat.

7. Excessive Wear and Tear

Excessive physical wear and tear to the heater body is a telltale sign of when to replace a furnace. This physical wear and tear could be anything from dents on the metal, small cracks, and even rusting on the surface.

Rusting and cracks occur over time as the unit ages. More rusting means the replacement date is getting closer. If there are parts that are falling apart, chipping, very loose or has massive dents, get a new one as soon as possible.

8. Too Much Dust Particles and Less Moisture

As your heating system gets nearer to the average lifespan of a furnace, by-products will accumulate. Soot, dust or rust particles tend to accumulate over the life of a furnace - a possible sign of carbon monoxide in the air.

An older furnace's lifespan also results in a lack of moisturization in the air. If the house is stuffy, moldy, or even dustier than usual, you need to get your furnace serviced or replaced.

9. Too Many Furnace Repairs

The number of repairs in a heating system affects its total value to your home. When should you replace the furnace? If you have done at least two repairs over the past two years, send it away.

In the entire life of a furnace, breakdowns will happen. Those can be within expectations as the product ages. Excessive failures mean you're sinking good money on an old product.

This goes the same for air-conditioning. Too many repairs mean it's time to get a new one.

Furnace Replacement Should Happen Before the Cold Weather Sets In

There are various tell-tale signs that a furnace needs a replacement. You don't have to be an expert to see that.

If you're unsure about the age of the furnace, the vigilant thing to do is be observant. Dips in performance, efficiency issues, damage level and the overall comfort of your household should be enough reasons to tell the furnace lifespan.

Furnace replacement is not too expensive when done right. Aim for a replacement before the cold sets in your home. Do not risk your household suffering from cold indoors.

Comfortec has been serving as Iowa's utility experts since 2004. Our workmanship is 100% guaranteed.

If you have any utility problems at home, talk to our experts. We'll give you a quote and get the job done in a jiffy.

Talk to us for unparalleled quality. Customer satisfaction is always guaranteed.

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