Your home’s furnace is not built to last forever. But how can you tell how long your furnace will last and if it’s approaching the final years and months of its life? Furnace’s lifespan is ultimately the result of a confluence of multiple factors.
It is critical that you understand at what point your furnace is along its lifecycle so you can prepare to replace it accordingly. Here are the four essential things you need to pay attention to.
1. Furnaces Generally Last 15 to 20 Years – If Well Maintained
A well-maintained furnace will last anywhere between 15 and 20 years. Working with an experienced furnace repair service such as Furnace Repair Near Me is vital.
With quality routine maintenance as well as a bit of good luck, a furnace can even exceed 30 years. However, a neglected furnace may fall far short of a 15-year lifespan.
The type of fuel a furnace uses does matter as well. Oil furnaces have the longest life expectancy while natural gas furnaces have the shortest.
Either way, once a furnace gets to 10 years old, it requires more elaborate inspection and maintenance since it is at this point that most major repairs will occur.
2. Size Matters
Choosing the right size of furnace for your home is key to maximizing its lifespan. Avoid picking a smaller unit to save money or a larger one to heat the home quicker.
Rather, your choice of furnace capacity should be based on the total square footage of your home as well as the amount of heat required to efficiently effect temperature change.
In addition to square footage, take into consideration the area climate, the vegetation around the property, and the materials used in building the home.
When you install a furnace that is too small for the home, it will have to work harder to maintain the heating at the right level. This will prematurely age it thus lowering its longevity. A similar problem faces a furnace that’s too large since it will cycle on and off too often. Excessive cycling will wear out critical parts quicker than they otherwise would thus accelerating aging.
3. Poor Installation Can Shorten Lifespan
Furnace function and lifespan depend on the correct installation of fuel lines and venting. When installed properly, a furnace will use its energy source and air to run efficiently.
With an incorrect setup, inefficient energy intake and airflow may damage the inner components of the furnace. It may also increase the risk of a carbon monoxide leak–a serious health and safety hazard.
When ducts are poorly arranged or have cracks, heated air will be deployed to areas that do not require it. This inefficiency overworks the unit thereby reducing its lifespan.
4. Temperature Swings and Spikes in Energy Bills
Some signs of looming furnace failure such as debris and strange sounds are more obvious. Other indicators are not.
As a furnace gets older, it becomes increasingly inefficient. This affects temperature and airflow in a home. If rooms are not heating as evenly as they used to and therefore require frequent thermostat adjustment, the furnace may need to be replaced.
You should keep an eye on energy bills as well. The older a furnace gets, the more fuel it requires to run. This leads to higher energy bills.
Routine Maintenance Is Essential
Routine maintenance is key to getting the most life out of your furnace. For example, changing air filters regularly is important for facilitating smooth airflow and reducing the strain on the furnace. Oil furnaces require more frequent air filter changes than electric or gas furnaces.
Overall, if in doubt about your furnace’s operation and when it needs to be replaced, contact a licensed furnace technician.
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