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What is the average lifespan of a furnace?

heating repairman

It’s a saying that we’ve all heard before: “Nothing lasts forever.” It’s true of your car, your appliances, and—yes—your home’s HVAC systems. In this article, we’ll discuss the average lifespan of a furnace and what factors play into your heating system’s overall longevity.

  • The average lifespan of a furnace is 15 – 20 years.
  • A lack of maintenance will shorten the life of a furnace.
  • Improper installation will cause premature wear.
  • You can increase the lifespan of your furnace by improving your home’s energy efficiency.

Why does my furnace’s lifespan matter?

Investing in a new furnace or HVAC system for your home represents a significant financial commitment, often ranking among the priciest household appliances to replace. The longevity of your furnace directly impacts your budget; every additional year it operates efficiently is a year you can defer the substantial expense of purchasing a new system. Remarkably, with a modicum of effort and proactive maintenance, you can significantly extend the life expectancy of your furnace, potentially reaching 20 to 25 years of service. This extension not only represents a substantial cost savings but also offers environmental benefits by reducing waste and the need for new resources.

To achieve this extension, consider implementing a series of maintenance strategies and efficiency improvements. Regularly changing or cleaning air filters, for instance, can prevent the system from overworking due to restricted airflow, thus reducing wear and tear. Scheduling annual professional inspections and tune-ups can also identify and rectify minor issues before they escalate into major, costly problems. These tune-ups often include cleaning the system, checking for leaks, ensuring the thermostat is properly calibrated, and verifying that the system cycles on and off correctly.

Moreover, improving your home’s insulation and sealing leaks around doors and windows can decrease the workload on your furnace, as it won’t need to work as hard to maintain a comfortable temperature. Upgrading to a smart thermostat can further enhance efficiency by allowing you to precisely control heating schedules and reduce heating when the house is empty or during warmer periods.

In addition to these measures, being mindful of the system’s operation and promptly addressing any signs of malfunction can prevent significant damage. Noise, unusual smells, or a decline in heating efficiency can be early indicators of problems that need immediate attention.

By adopting a comprehensive approach to furnace maintenance and efficiency, homeowners can enjoy significant benefits. Not only can they potentially delay the need for a costly replacement for up to a decade, but they can also enjoy lower energy bills, improved comfort, and a reduced environmental footprint. This proactive strategy underscores the importance of regular maintenance and efficiency improvements in maximizing the value of your home’s heating system.

What factors into a furnace’s lifespan?

If you’re interested in extending your furnace’s lifespan, make sure you take care of the following:

Annual maintenance

Like all the equipment in and around your home, your furnace requires regular upkeep and care to ensure it keeps running right. By scheduling an annual furnace tune-up with a certified HVAC professional, you can make sure your furnace is ready for the winter ahead and many winters after.

The best time to schedule preventative furnace maintenance is in the fall, before you turn your furnace on for the year. However, if you’re already past that point, you should still make an appointment. There’s no bad time to have an expert take a closer look at your system and ensure everything is running right. By doing so, you’ll be far more likely to avoid major problems and faults that—ultimately—may spell an early end for your system.

Chicagoland heating, Cooling & Plumbing is your go-to team for efficient and effective system maintenance. Give us a call today to book an appointment with our technicians.

Furnace maintenance in Chicago

Proper installation

You’re probably reading this article because you already have a furnace. In this case, this advice—short of you having access to a time machine—is probably a little too late for you to act on. However, it’s helpful to understand the impact that proper installation has on your furnace’s lifespan. From the very beginning, how your furnace is sized and installed can impact just how long it’ll be able to serve you and your home.

The “original sin” of many furnace installs occurs when a technician improperly estimates the needed size of the system. A furnace that’s either too small or too big for your home is going to have performance, efficiency, and—you guessed it—longevity issues. If the furnace is too small, it’ll have to run constantly to even have a hope of keeping up with your home’s heating needs, putting a lot of extra mileage on its components. On the other hand, if your furnace is too large, it will constantly be starting and stopping, which is also bad for the system.

When getting a new furnace installed in your home, it’s important to have a qualified HVAC pro—like those here at Chicagoland—help you determine which system is right for you. If you already have a furnace that you suspect is having problems because of inadequate installation, you should give us a call so that we can take a closer look and see what we can do in the present-day to help you out.

Furnace Installation

Home energy-efficiency

Expanding on the premise that minimizing the operational duration of your furnace can significantly reduce long-term stress on the system, it’s important to recognize the array of proactive measures available to homeowners aiming to alleviate the burden on their heating systems. Among these strategies, adjusting your thermostat settings presents an immediately implementable and straightforward approach. By setting your home’s temperature just a degree or two lower than usual—a change so subtle it’s often imperceptible—you can achieve a dual benefit: a noticeable reduction in your winter utility expenses and a contribution to the prolonged operational health of your furnace. This adjustment serves to mitigate the furnace’s workload, thereby extending its lifespan and enhancing its efficiency.

Regular maintenance of your HVAC system’s air filter is another critical step in this process. A filter clogged with dust and debris compromises the system’s efficiency and effectiveness, forcing it to work harder to circulate warm air throughout your home. To maintain optimal performance, it’s advisable to replace or clean the HVAC air filter approximately every three months. However, households with pets or children, which may introduce more particulates into the air, might find it necessary to perform this maintenance more frequently.

But the journey towards optimizing your home’s energy efficiency doesn’t end with these initial steps. Delving deeper, homeowners can explore a variety of energy-efficiency upgrades that further reduce the furnace’s workload and, by extension, extend its lifespan. Initiatives such as enhancing attic insulation contribute significantly to maintaining consistent indoor temperatures, thereby reducing the demand on your heating system. Similarly, replacing old, leaky windows with energy-efficient models can prevent heat from escaping your home, ensuring your furnace doesn’t overcompensate for lost warmth.

While these upgrades often require upfront investment, they’re not solely about achieving immediate reductions in monthly utility costs. They also represent a strategic investment in your home’s infrastructure, contributing to a more sustainable living environment. By adopting these measures, homeowners can enjoy the dual benefits of lower energy bills and a delayed need for costly HVAC system replacements. Moreover, these steps align with broader environmental goals by reducing energy consumption and minimizing the carbon footprint associated with heating homes.

Service for furnaces

Call Chicagoland Heating, Cooling & Plumbing

Whether you’re in need of an annual system tune-up or you need Chicagoland Heating, Cooling & Plumbing to provide you with a free in-home estimate on a new furnace, call us. We’re Chicago’s furnace service experts. From installation to maintenance and repairs, our trusted and experienced technicians will do everything they can to extend your system’s lifespan and ensure that your home experiences reliable heating for many, many winters to come.