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The Lifespan of Your Furnace: How Long Should it Really Last?

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How long should a furnace last? Whether your unit is new or on its way out, this is a question everyone asks themselves. We all want to get the most of our air conditioning equipment, especially when repairs and replacements can be expensive. 

Regular maintenance can help eliminate or reduce the cost of owning a furnace. Good habits that keep your home’s heating system in good working condition could be the difference between a well-functioning machine and a breakdown—every homeowners’ nightmare.

How Long Should A Furnace Last?

A new furnace will last between fifteen and thirty years. The exact time varies depending upon how a furnace is built; some have more or fewer parts added for convenience, energy efficiency, and cost. Some units have more complicated construction, while others are more streamlined.

Routine maintenance of your furnace and its components is one of the easiest ways to make sure it lasts. It’s best to perform routine furnace maintenance before winter begins. In the fall, have an HVAC expert clean your furnace and make sure it’s running smoothly.

Keep the following tips in mind to make sure your furnace stays in the best shape possible:

1) Install A Thermostat

Consider having a newer thermostat installed in your home. Programmable thermostats allow you to automate your furnace so it only runs when it needs to. For example, your thermostat can be scheduled from your cellphone to operate at a lower, less energy-consuming setting when you’re not home or on vacation, and at a higher setting when you are. 

Fixed temperatures for an extended period mean less wear and tear on your furnace, and running it only when necessary helps reduce the strain. This also helps you save money on your utility bills. Smart thermostats allow you to set temperatures through an app on your cell phone.

2) Change Air Filters Regularly

Air filters are an important part of maintaining the health and cleanliness of your furnace. They prevent dirt and debris from entering your HVAC system, which helps keep the air quality in your home clean as well. 

When your furnace has a dirty air filter, it restricts the amount of airflow allowed to move throughout your home. A furnace works harder and longer to push warmed air through the filter, which adds an unnecessary strain on the system. This can shorten the life of your furnace if it goes unchanged and sometimes leads to the furnace overheating.

Making sure your furnace filters are clean and changed regularly is an easy and cost-effective way to extend the lifespan of your furnace. If there’s visible dust buildup, a hair clog, or other contaminants, or you can’t see a light behind the filter, then it’s time to change it. The usual timeframe for replacing a furnace filter is about ninety days.

3) Check Your Home's Insulation

Ensuring that your home is properly insulated is also an important part of getting the most out of your furnace. This is especially vital in the winter months. 

how long does a furnace last infographic

Good insulation helps trap heat inside the home and prevents the need to run your furnace as much as you would without it—another way to save on your energy bill!

4) Use Alternative Heat Sources

You can also find other ways to heat your home. Not using your furnace is an obvious way to lengthen the life of your HVAC system, so give it a rest once in a while. Make use of ceiling fans, dress warmly, seal off your windows in the wintertime, or use a space heater to heat or cool your home when appropriate. 

Pro tip: setting your ceiling fans to rotate counterclockwise helps circulate warm air through the home and distribute heat.

5) Get a Regular Furnace Tune-Up

Are you still wondering how long do furnaces last? The answer is, much longer if you perform preventative maintenance. 

If your furnace needs to be fixed, don’t wait to contact an HVAC technician. Furnace issues can get worse and leaving small issues for too long can lead to a significant furnace repair down the road. Don’t risk letting the problem get to the point of no return, then rendering your whole furnace useless and in need of replacement. 

Schedule HVAC System Maintenance

The best way to extend your furnace lifespan is to have an HVAC technician perform annual maintenance. At Home Comfort USA, our main priority is to help you keep your furnace working efficiently for as long as possible. We’re here to make sure your indoor air quality is safe, so your family can be healthy. Give Home Comfort USA a call today and receive same-day service with a skilled service technician to get the most out of your heater.

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