When the weather is frigid, you need your furnace to work correctly. Otherwise, you’ll not only be uncomfortable, but it could also affect your health. There comes a time when making do with an old heating unit is a recipe for disaster. Here are 12 red flags to watch for now, so you can prevent being without safe, reliable heat when you need it.
1. You’ve had your current furnace for over 15 years
It might seem frivolous to change out a furnace just because it’s getting older. If it still seems to be working okay, you might feel like it isn’t necessary. However, most older furnaces were only designed to operate for 16 to 20 years at most. If you wait until it breaks down, you’ll have to buy in a hurry. That could mean you don’t get the best deal. By budgeting for the furnace replacement ahead of time, you avoid having to come up with the cost of a new furnace at a moment’s notice.
2. It’s needed frequent repairs lately
How many times have you had your furnace repaired in the last two years? Also, when you did have to have it repaired, did you have to wait a long time for parts to come in? Furnaces that are reaching their life expectancy usually have to be repaired often in those last two years. And, because the furnace is getting old, many of the parts are hard to come by.
3. Your heating costs have gone up
If your energy bills have gone up lately, it may be a sign that your furnace is wearing out. Old furnaces typically have to run longer to produce the same amount of heat. Older furnaces aren’t energy savers like new high-efficiency furnaces, anyway, and they become less efficient as they age. That’s especially true if your furnace hasn’t been maintained properly.
4. It’s making unusual sounds
Furnaces that are getting too old to function properly usually start making strange sounds. You may hear clunking, banging, popping, or squealing. These sounds may indicate that the furnace is having to work harder to keep up, a part is broken or wearing out, the bearings are failing, the heat exchanger is cracked, or the transformer is starting to go bad.
5. It isn’t keeping the house comfortable
If your furnace isn’t keeping you warm enough, it’s probably because it can no longer distribute the air evenly around your home. Some rooms may be just right, some too cool, and some may even be too warm. If your furnace is too old, it just isn’t capable of keeping your entire home at a comfortable temperature.
6. Your carbon monoxide sensor keeps beeping
Carbon monoxide can cause a dangerous situation for you and your family. If you have a carbon monoxide alarm and you’re constantly having to turn it off, you need to leave your home immediately and call for help in resolving the situation. Then, request a consultation with a HVAC specialist to determine if your furnace is the cause. This is one case where you have an urgent need to replace the furnace as soon as possible.
7. You and your family are having unexplained symptoms
Even if your carbon monoxide alarm isn’t sounding or you don’t have one, you can still tell there’s a problem before long. You and your family may have symptoms like headaches, burning in the nose and eyes, nausea, flu-like symptoms, and even disorientation. This is often caused by a furnace with a cracked heat exchanger that’s leaking carbon monoxide.
8. Your house is too dry and dusty
A new furnace has the capability of cleaning and humidifying the air in your home. Not so with an older furnace. If your furnace is getting old and worn, you might notice that your house gets dusty faster than before. You and your family may have more allergy symptoms because of increased dust, mold, viruses, dander, and pollen. Your skin, nose, and throat may be unusually dry. You may notice a lot of static shocks, and your furniture might start cracking. A new furnace could resolve these problems.
9. Its air flow is weak
Next time your furnace comes on, put your hand in front of the vent. Does the air seem to be flowing out well? Or, is the airflow very weak? If your furnace isn’t putting out enough air, the motor may need to be replaced. If the furnace is old anyway, it’s much more cost-effective to go ahead and replace the entire unit.
10. You notice cracks or corrosion
Now, go take a look at your furnace. See if there’s any rust or corrosion. Examine it for cracks. If you find any of these problems, it may be a safety concern. It also shows that your furnace is at the end of its useful life. Soon, you will have no choice but to replace it.
11. It’s cycling too much or not enough
Sit quietly for a while and pay attention to how often your furnace cycles. Is it turning on and off more than it did when it was new? Does it stay on all the time? In either case, your furnace isn’t working correctly. It’s time to go ahead and replace it.
12. It’s stopped working altogether and can’t be fixed
Of course, if your furnace has reached a point where it no longer works at all, you will likely need to go ahead and replace it. If you call your HVAC specialist and find out that it can’t be repaired, you will need to talk to them about getting a new furnace.
If you’re concerned that you need a new furnace, call Tempasure now. At Tempasure, our HVAC experts can help you assess your need for a new furnace. We’ll ask you about what you’ve noticed and inspect the unit. If you do need a new furnace, we can recommend the right one for your unique home. We can also install your new heating unit to ensure that it performs the way it should. With a furnace you can rely on through the winter, you can rest easy and enjoy a more comfortable home environment.