There is so much to worry about when it comes to running your home.
- Should I get a home alarm system?
- What types of fixtures meet my lighting needs but are still energy efficient?
- Should I install carpet or tile?
And if that’s not enough, include one more thing on the list: When should I replace my heater?
Your heating system shouldn’t require undivided 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 unit that is wasting energy and money with every utility bill.
But how should I know if it’s time to replace my heating unit?
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 normal for a heating unit to eventually need a part replacement or a little love once a year to make sure everything is running properly, but a well-maintained heating unit should work without much repairing along the way. A few signs 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 writing checks just to keep your house comfortably warm.
A general rule to remember: if annual repair costs reach half of the present value of the heating system, it’s likely time to replace your furnace.
2. Energy Efficiency
Are your heating are a little higher than this time last year? That may be a sign that some part of your heating system is weakening. Most companies can give you a residential energy audit which can point out easily remedied inefficiencies like weather-stripping around your doors and windows or attic insulation. It may also be the first step in determining if your heating unit is going out. Older heating units 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 the new system.
3. Old Age
Heating units were never designed to last until the end of time. Better, more efficient technology is coming out all the time. But how long should your unit 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 percent or less! A replacement that’s been qualified with the Energy Star rating can be up to 30% more efficient, and that’s a difference you’ll notice in your home and your bank account.
4. Excessive Noise
If you have to raise your voice to talk because your unit is abnormally 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, rattling, bumping, or banging could be signs of a mechanical matter. It could be as easy as a worn belt, but it may mean an internal component of your unit has loosened or come completely disconnected.
Today’s latest systems operate more silently than ever. Often you’ll have to really give attention to even know if they’re running. If noise pollution is a concern for you, that may be reason enough to upgrade to more modern equipment.
5. Temperature and Comfort Issues
If you are having to constantly hike 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 items that could cause this issue - it may be resolved 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 thought 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 temperature. Common issues when the humidity is too low are dry air, sore throats, and chapped skin. Improper 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 HVAC unit.
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 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 heater, or you want to upgrade your furnace to green technology, replace your home’s ductwork, or do a total overhaul of the entire system, call Rolf Griffin Service Experts today for a free, no-obligation Home Comfort Analysis.