By Susan Nichol
Yes? Well you have come to the right page for information about what to do next.
The first question that comes to mind is should it be repaired or replaced? (Pictured below, older unit, rusting, dirty, likelyhood of more repairs is high.)
A PG&E representative recently suggested to start looking for a new furnace when yours is at about 12-15 years old, other sources I checked with all appear to fall within the same range although many suggest 15 years. 15 years is about the average life of the normal furnace. There are factors that affect this like regular preventative maintenance and usage.
Generally, it makes more sense to install a new unit when the unit is 15 years old because other parts will continue to deteriorate or if the repair bill is fairly high.
Consider these points before replacement:
The Furnace is fairly new– Check the warranty – some manufacturer’s warranty their parts for up to 10 years and most newer units will likely be under warranty. In this case unless the parts that have broken are not under warranty and they are expensive items it makes sense to fix the unit rather than replae. Keep in mind warranties typically cover parts and not the labor.
Inexpensive Repair – sometimes, a small repair is needed that is inexpensive. For a newer furnace with a small issue a few hundred dollars may be enough to get your furnace up and running. Don’t choose on price alone.
An Aging Furnace – a decision has to be made – just like with an aging car, repair and pray or replace. Let’s say for this repair the cost is just about $600, there is no tellin when the next part will fail. It may make sense for replacement instead of throwing good money after bad into a furnace over 15 years old.
Also Consider – Was the furnace well maintained by a professional technician semi-annually or annually (if AC maintenance should be spring and fall) a poorly maintained furnace has a bigger chance of other parts failing as well.
Energy Efficiency – There are some really energy efficient advances in heating even just recently. The older units can be 50-70% efficient, some even state energy efficient and they are 80% efficient. Today we are installing units as efficient as 98%. This efficiency rating is labeled as AFUE. Energy efficiency needs to be considered when thinking about replacement. The difference in your heating energy bill could be 20-48% better than what is in your home today.
Lastly make sure you have a licensed, insured, experienced and certified contractor to either repair or replace your furnace.
If you need help with temperature, contact Cold Craft, Inc.
408.374.7292 or [email protected]