The summer is fast fading and when that happens we know what to expect – shorter days and cooler nights. If you are a homeowner who lives in a snowy climate, chances are you will be checking your furnace for proper performance. Now would be a good time to troubleshoot it or you may not have heat during the fall and winter. A furnace that hasn’t been tuned up will run you into high energy costs, not to mention the price you must pay for maintenance or repairs. Getting it done now will give you peace of mind, ensure that you have reliable heat for the winter and save you the risk of replacement later, or having to worry about repair costs. Here are 10 warning signs that a furnace replacement is imminent.
1. Your Furnace Sounds Like a Monster
No furnace is completely soundless, but if it is making noises like a hungry tiger on the prowl for food -groaning, whining, banging – repair may include replacing a loose belt, priming the ignition, or finding the correct component to replace it with. Troubleshooting as soon as you hear those noises and you will be on your way to to quickly remedying the situation.
2. Turning Up the Thermostat Doesn’t Do the Job Anymore
Your natural reaction to feeling cold is to turn up your thermostat to a temperature where you feel comfortable again. Lately, however, this just doesn’t work anymore. Now you won’t have the proper heat during the cold season months. This suggests that the thermostat may be on the blink, or your ducts might be leaking. For constant, reliable heat, call in a specialist to see if the problem is your thermostat and he will suggest a replacement.
3. Your Electric Bill Skyrocketed
When you’re paying more than you normally do for electricity it means your furnace isn’t working properly. Rather than doing guesswork , it is best to call a specialist in so that they can remedy the problem.
4. Yellow Pilot Signal
If you notice that the pilot light on your furnace is glowing yellow you probably think everything is alright. This is just as big a warning as the yellow traffic signs on street corners. A yellow light indicates that the gas balance of your furnace is not in good condition. What you want is for the flame to be blue, which means that the gases are perfectly balanced. Yellow means that carbon monoxide is being emitted, which is dangerous, and lethal to you and your family.
5. You Have Difficulty Starting and Keeping Your Furnace On
This is a sure sign that you need furnace repairs. Problems can range from improper wiring, a broken fan motor or getting a new pilot light. Most furnace repair companies will provide easy financing provided you catch the problem before it becomes too severe.
6. Your Family is Experiencing Respiratory Problems
When your furnace needs fixing you may notice that it is linked to frequent problems with breathing such as asthma and chest related illnesses. A system that doesn’t work properly pours dust, mold and other pathogens in the air which circulate in your home. Diminished air quality is an incentive for getting your furnace fixed as soon as possible.
7. Hot and Cold Spots
If you constantly feel a draft while your furnace is on it means that it is no longer strong enough to heat your entire home. If you find ice forming on your roof this may indicate that the heat from your house is escaping through the attic rather than keeping place in the living section where it is supposed to be. Getting your furnace tuned-up will provide greater efficiency by getting rid of those cold and hot spots.
8. Air Condensation
You may not need furnace repairs for condensation, but if it keeps up it could mean you’ll be making constant calls for checkups that could lead to a higher risk of replacement. It is best to only allow two minor furnace issues occur in succession before you call for a maintenance person.
9. Your Furnace is a Dinosaur
The average furnace last between 10 to 20 years with a good unit lasting into the upper level of that range. If you have had your furnace for over 15 years, now is a good time to begin looking for a new one. A new furnace gives constant, reliable heat, eliminates repair costs and maintenance visits.
10. Your Furnace Gives Off an Unusual Odor
Your furnace is only supposed to have the scent of fresh gas or oil if you are using it for the first time of the season. If after several consecutive uses, there is still a strange smell during your generator use, then something isn’t normal. Contact a specialist right away to diagnose the problem. Strange odors are more serious than you might think. Not only does it mean your unit is not functioning properly, but it also poses safety hazards to your environment.