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With the cold reaching record temperatures and snow falling hard all across the nation, your furnace is working harder than ever. Now is certainly not the time to let your furnace break down! Regular professional maintenance from the experts at Approved Comfort can help you ensure your furnace makes it all the way through the hard winter — from safety check to complete system test, a furnace tune-up is absolutely worth the time.

But unfortunately, furnace breakdowns still happen every year — when they do, the Approved Comfort experts are ready to answer the call. This past week, one of our technicians responded to a call out in Palatine, IL, where they found a 13 year old Lennox furnace had completely nonoperational. The thermostat wasn’t reading the correct temperatures, and even when they managed to turn the inducer motor on it was noisy and in obvious disrepair. The technician wrote the following on his analysis sheet: “Due to the age, inefficiency, and potential cost of repairing the unit, the I recommend replacing the unit and the thermostat.” The homeowner accepted, and before long the furnace replacement was a success.

So why was this the right choice to make? Generally, repairs are less expensive than completely new furnace installation, and repairs typically don’t take as long procedure-wise. However, there are some scenarios where furnace replacement in the way to go, and we’d like to describe those scenarios to you here:

When is it Time for Furnace Replacement?

Hereare the tell-tale signs that your furnace is on its last legs and needs to be swapped out. You’ll notice that they match the reasons our Approved Comfort tech wrote on the invoice — that’s because our experts know their stuff! Whenever you’re in doubt, and Approved Comfort technician can perform an inspection and determine exactly what you need. But here are the basic signs:

  • Age– Most quality furnaces have a lifespan of about 10 to 15 years — the 13 year old Lennox machine this technician found falls squarely in the middle! Typically, if a device is older than ten years when it experiences a breakdown, furnace replacement will be preferable. That’s because so many innovations and improvements are being made to newer furnace models that you’ll probably wind up saving money by making the switch just from the month over month reduction on your energy bills.
  • Inefficiency– There comes a point in any furnace’s life when it just isnt’ going to work like it used to. Rooms will have unbalanced heat, energy bills will be unusually high, and the thermostat won’t properly communicate with the device. At this point, it’s simply better to upgrade.
  • Cost– In the same way that a car can reach a level of disrepair where the renovation costs as much as the vehicle itself, your furnace has a point of diminishing return on furnace repair. Some problems, like a cracked heat exchanger, corrupt the entire machine and make repair difficult — and sometimes impossible.

Whenever possible, the Approved Comfort technicians will perform furnace repair rather than replacement in order to save homeowners money. But in some cases, such as the one from earlier this week in Palatine,  furnace replacement is simply the better option! Call Approved Comfort for furnace services you can depend on today.