Like all home appliances, the furnace shows signs it’s time for repair or even complete replacement. The fall season is an important time to look out for these signs to avoid having to deal with a heating emergency in the dead of winter.
1. Old age
The AC unit is built to last 10 to 15 years, depending on the model and how well it was maintained. The older the unit, the more likely you’ll need serious repairs in the near future. In some cases, it would be more cost-effective to replace the furnace, rather than paying for expensive service.
Older units are more likely to use R-22 refrigerant gas, which has been banned by the EPA and is being phased out. Though you can still service your unit with R-22, it is becoming difficult to source and expensive to do. To switch to an approved alternative refrigerant, you’ll have to pay for additional labor to flush the unit.
2. Strange noises
A malfunctioning furnace can make banging, rattling, and whistling noises, indicating there may be a broken part or an unbalanced indoor blower. Don’t ignore these noises, as they can worsen and require even more expensive repairs.
3. High electrical/gas bill
Older units are less likely to be energy-efficient, driving up monthly utility bills. Though it’s normal to see an increase between summer and fall, sharp increases between months in the fall season could indicate the furnace needs service or a complete replacement.
4. Inconsistent temperature
If the furnace isn’t reaching the temperature set on the thermostat and doesn’t seem to be heating the home properly, you may need to have a professional inspection. Depending on the cause and extent of the damage, the furnace may need to be replaced.
5. Expensive repairs
There comes a point when it’s no longer worth it to keep replacing parts of a dying machine. Call Roger The Plumber and speak to a licensed HVAC technician to find out when it’s better to replace the entire furnace, rather than continue shelling out hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars.