The typical furnace will provide a homeowner with approximately 15 years of life, but there is a considerable amount of variation to this. Adjustments to the lifespan may be made because of the make and model, weather conditions and how heavily it was used and more. Because there are so many factors that come into play that affect the life of your system, there are numerous steps that you can take to extend the life of your furnace. If you are not currently taking these steps, you may consider taking action now so that you can enjoy the maximum amount of life from your furnace.
Adjust Your Thermostat
When you think about adjusting your thermostat, you may think about the energy savings that you can enjoy by running your furnace less frequently during the winter months. While lower utility bills is a key benefit associated with adjusting the thermostat, another important benefit is that there will be less wear on the heating system. With less wear, the components will enjoy superior life. Keep in mind that adjusting the thermostat downward in the winter by only a couple of degrees can have a significant impact on energy efficiency as well as on longevity.
Replace Your Air Filter Regularly
Your HVAC air filter is responsible for capturing dust, pet dander, dirt and other debris that is circulating through the heating system in the winter months. It traps the particulates to remove them from the air. However, the air will continue to blow into the air filter even when it is dirty, and the dirt and dust can block the flow of air. When this happens, the furnace will need to work harder to keep the home warm during the winter months. This inflates energy bills and causes extra wear on the furnace components. It is wise to replace your air filter every month or before you notice that it is saturated with dirt.
Clean Your Air Ducts
Just as an air filter can get dirty over time, the air ducts can as well. The dirt and debris blowing in the air can accumulate on the inside walls of the air ducts, creating a narrower channel for the air to pass through. This has a similar effect as a dirty air filter, causing the system to work harder than it otherwise would need to in order to heat the home. Scheduling professional air duct cleaning for your home every year or two is a great way to promote energy efficiency and to help your system function well for years to come.
Schedule Annual Maintenance
Most furnace manufacturers recommend that their various models receive regular maintenance service each year. The ideal time to schedule this is at the beginning of the fall season before you turn the furnace on for the first time. Maintenance service has several purposes. It will clean the components in the system, identify weaknesses in the system that require attention and replace worn out components. This helps your furnace to function with peak efficiency, decreasing unnecessary wear and tear. A side benefit is that it also can result in energy savings throughout the winter months.
Repair Your System When Needed
Another step that you can take to keep your furnace running well for years to come is to schedule repair work as soon as you notice the need. Some people will delay calling a technician for a seemingly minor issue, but a minor issue can lead to a major problem with your system. When a minor issue is not repaired, it will continue to cause strain on other components in the furnace until it is repaired. This can weaken various areas of the furnace, and this will have a detrimental impact on longevity.
A furnace is a much-needed aspect of your home, and it can be expensive to replace. You rely on the furnace as a source of warmth on the chilliest days of the year, and downtime related to an unexpected replacement can be difficult to deal with financially and from a comfort standpoint. While all furnaces will need to be replaced over time, you may be able to extend the life of your furnace by several years if you follow these helpful tips.