Are you concerned that your heater may not make it through the winter after numerous breakdowns or repairs last year? Now that winter is on its way, you may also be worried about the rising costs to heat your home. Maybe it is time to start thinking about replacing your old unreliable and inefficient heater.
Reasons to Consider Replacing Your Heater
If your heater is nickel and diming you with repair after repair, deciding to replace it may be more cost-effective for you. Weigh the following factors when trying to decide whether to replace your heater:
- Your repair costs are more than 33 percent of what it would cost you to replace your heater.
- Your heater is more than 10 to 15 years old.
- You are afraid to look at your utility bills during the winter because of the costs related to heating your home.
- It is constantly cold in your home because your heater cannot keep up.
- The noise coming from your heater is becoming increasingly louder.
If you have followed the manufacturer’s recommendations for maintaining your elderly heater, your unit could potentially last past its life expectancy. However, if the unit requires any major repairs once it has reached the 75 percent mark of its expected life, your heating contractor may recommend replacing it. For example, replacing a pilot light might not be a major or expensive repair for an older furnace, but if you are facing having to replace an induction motor, you are usually better off replacing your system.
New Standards for Efficiency
Today’s heaters are subject to a stricter standard for energy efficiency, which makes them much more energy efficient than a heater that is 10 years old or older. Since 1992, heating equipment manufacturers have been required to adhere to energy conservation standards set by the U.S. Department of Energy. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has also set higher standards for minimum AFUE ratings to help conserve fossil fuels and reduce air pollution that is caused from heating systems.
AFUE refers to a ratio known as Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency. This ratio measures the amount of fuel that is used by a heater that is actually burned to produce heat versus the amount of fuel that is not fully burned and is turned into soot. The soot represents a waste of fuel due to inefficient burning. A system that makes better use of the fuel it burns is considered more energy efficient and a cleaner system because it will release less pollutants into the air.
When shopping for a residential heater replacement Louisville KY, you will want a heater with the highest AFUE rating that you can afford. The tradeoff here is that while you will pay more upfront for a heater with a higher AFUE rating, you will receive a higher ROI because of the energy savings you will realize.
If you have been already told that you would be better off replacing your heater instead of repairing, it does not hurt to have a second opinion by an experienced HVAC contractor.