Is your furnace trying to tell you something? Sometimes your furnace chugs away for years, working perfectly ’til one day it doesn’t. Your first sign of a problem might be the furnace failing to start on a cold night, or — in a worst-case scenario — your carbon monoxide detector going off. But often as not, your furnace sends subtle clues that something’s a bit off. Ace Plumbing helps you decode what your furnace is telling you.
If you’re seeing soot or burn marks around your furnace, or if the burner flame is more yellow-orange than blue, that’s a sign of trouble. Specifically, it means that your burner isn’t burning clean, or that it’s generating potentially lethal carbon monoxide.
Over time, you’ve probably gotten used to the sounds your HVAC system makes. If something doesn’t sound like it used to, that’s often a sign that something’s wrong.
Any complex system needs parts replaced from time to time. However, if you notice that those repairs are coming closer together than they used to, it’s generally a sign that your furnace is on its last legs.
Climbing Utility Bills
If you’re noticing a spike in your energy usage — and the higher bills that go with it — it could be a sign of trouble with your furnace. Compare temperature changes and your energy use year-over-year (accounting for changes in the cost of gas or oil) to see if your furnace is working longer hours than it used to in order to heat your home.
The average furnace is built to last for 18-20 years, per EnergyStar. If your furnace is reaching the end of its service life, it’s worth looking at a replacement even if there are no other signs of trouble. Why? Designs and engineering change and improve over time, so spending a bit now to upgrade can mean a more efficient unit that saves you money over the long term.
Bear in mind that any of these warning signs can clue you in to the fact that something is wrong, but they may not necessarily mean that you need to replace your furnace. Sometimes, a simple cleaning is all that’s called for; other times — especially with a unit that was installed in the last few years — it could just be a single component that needs attention. If you’re not sure, call us. You might even qualify for rebates and tax credits!
If you’ve gone down this list and something still doesn’t seem right, don’t let it come down to a coin toss or consulting a Magic 8 Ball. Trust your gut and call a professional. We’ll let you know if it’s time for a new furnace.
Getting an expert opinion means knowing exactly what you’re dealing with. It also means safety, and the peace of mind that goes with it. The technicians of Ace Plumbing will thoroughly inspect your system and let you know what’s what. Also bear in mind that seasonal maintenance can help keep your furnace running its best for its entire service life. In either case, it’s time to call 916-4555-4548 today!