How To Extend the Life of Your Heating System

By Amy DeYoung

The typical cost to replace a heating system in a house is $4,870 to $6,470, which is definitely a significant expense most homeowners would like to put off as long as possible. So, how can you extend the life of your heating system?

Smart, preventative maintenance is key to extending the life of your HVAC system. Keep reading to learn more about the best ways to extend the life of your heating system and reduce heating and cooling costs.

Schedule Regular Checkups

Having an HVAC technician regularly check your heating system and air conditioner can save you thousands of dollars in repairs if they catch any problems early on.

You should have your heating system regularly inspected and serviced at least twice a year to ensure that it’s functioning optimally. During routine maintenance visits, your HVAC professional can also inform you if your system is outdated, harming indoor air quality, and increasing energy costs. 

Change the Filter Regularly

Another crucial part of caring for your heating system is regularly changing your dirty air filters. Filthy air filters force your heating system to work harder to circulate air in your home, causing unneeded strain on the system.

Most homeowners use 30-day or three-month filters, but you should check these regularly, and before their “time is up” in case they get clogged or filthy before expected.

Adjust Your Home’s Environment

Make smart decisions, like installing shades and investing in high-quality ceiling fans, reducing your reliance on your heating and cooling systems. Reflective shades can block and reflect unwanted heat from the outside during the summer but be removed during the winter to allow more natural and free heat to come into your home.

Don’t be afraid to bundle up and use blankets and sweaters to keep yourself warm during the winter without cranking up the temperature in your home. Space heaters can also help you save money and prevent wear and tear on your heating system.

Turn off your HVAC system whenever you can and allow open windows, space heaters, fans, and blankets to carry you through the day. You can even look for an “auto” setting on your HVAC system, reducing how often it’s actively heating and cooling your house. Remember that if you struggle with allergies or other respiratory issues, you may need to keep your HVAC on the “on” setting to keep air quality as high as possible.

Upgrade Your Insulation

The less your system has to run to maintain the desired temperature throughout your home, the longer the system will last. Keeping your home properly insulated will reduce how much heating and air conditioning you need to maintain your desired temperature.

The best place to look for air leaks and insufficient insulation is your attic. We recommend checking the Environmental Protection Agency’s insulation climate map to see the guidelines for insulation in your area. If you have less insulation than recommended, call a professional for an energy audit and evaluation of your insulation.

Clean Your Ducts

Ducts are crucial for your HVAC system, indoor air quality, and energy efficiency. You or a professional should deep clean your air ducts every five years to maintain healthy indoor air quality and improve your HVAC’s life span and efficiency. 

Use a Smart Thermostat

A smart thermostat can save you a lot of money on your utility bill. Look for programmable thermostats that you can control from anywhere with your smartphone. This allows you to cut back on heating and cooling if you spend the night elsewhere and make other energy-saving adjustments to your settings.

Repair Any Issues Immediately

The longer you wait to repair your heating system, the worse the problem may get and the more strain your system will undergo. As soon as you know about a small issue, immediately have it addressed by a service technician so that your heating system is always in the best shape possible.

Upgrade your Heating System

Did you know that there are huge differences between different types of heating systems and their average life spans? For example, a heat pump system only has a life expectancy of 15 years, while furnaces and boilers are expected to last 15 to 30 years. Modern heating systems, like electric heating and active solar heating, are even expected to last 20+ years.

If you have an outdated heating system that isn’t energy efficient, it may be worthwhile to replace the entire unit. Not only will you likely reduce your energy consumption and energy bill, but you’ll have a better chance of maintaining the new system if you start with good habits from the beginning of the system’s life span.

If you want to upgrade your heating system, consider electric heating, which has an estimated 95% to 100% energy efficiency and is relatively inexpensive to purchase compared to other heating systems.

Final Thoughts

A heating system can be expensive to replace and cost more to run if not properly maintained. Keep up with routine maintenance and regular tune-ups from a professional maintenance technician so that you can rest easy knowing your system runs optimally and does not consume excessive amounts of energy.

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