How long does a furnace last? HVAC technicians have to answer this question a thousand times every year. Furnace owners understand that their furnaces can’t last forever, but they want to know the service life they should expect from their investment.
Sadly, there is no one correct or wrong answer to this question. However, HVAC technicians will usually advise you from the point of expertise and experience, and that’s precisely what we will discuss below.
How Long Does a Furnace Last on Average?
We can’t give an exact figure to represent the exact average life of furnaces. So many factors come into play when determining the average life of furnaces, including the geographical location, type and brand of the furnace, and the building it’s installed.
Furnaces installed in commercial areas won’t have the same average life as those installed in residential areas. Furnaces installed in areas that receive more hours of cold and hot temperatures won’t have the same average life as those installed in the regions that receive mid-range temperatures.
In addition, furnaces from leading brands won’t have the same average life as those from newborn brands.
However, HVAC contractors estimate that the average life of most furnaces ranges between 15 and 30 years. If you don’t assign a professional to inspect and fine-tune your furnace regularly, you shouldn’t expect it to go over 15 years.
And if it does, most of its remaining useful life would be chaotic. You’ll be forced to stay in the cold or hot temperatures even when the system is running. Your HVAC contractor will as well be a frequent paid guest in your home.
What May Make My Furnace not hit the Average Maximum Lifespan of 30 Years?
Every furnace that meets the industry quality and durability standards can hit the average maximum life of 30 years.
Your input in keeping the furnace in shape and working efficiently will be the determinant of whether your heating system will succumb to damages at the age of 15 or it will be strong and healthy even at 30 years. Several things are known to cause the premature failure of modern heating systems.
Infrequent maintenance and tune-ups
Your heating system’s immunity has a limit on what it can take and how long it can run with dirty filters and damaged components. It’s your responsibility to get the furnace checked for issues and fine-tuned every few months.
Replace dirty and worn-out filters and components as frequently as possible. That reduces the load on the furnace, making it operate efficiently and extending its useful life.
A bigger or smaller system
HVAC technicians come in handy during the installation of furnaces because they help you to size up the system properly. Systems that don’t match the specific heating specifics of a room will have to work harder because they won’t go through the complete cycle. They will turn on and off every few minutes, which strains the system, affecting the lifespan.
Quality of Installation
There is a reason your furnace manufacturer recommends professional installation. They understand the complexity of the mechanics and components that make these heating systems. During DIY installation, slight tripping of the screwdriver may hit a sensitive part of the furnace, rendering it useless.
Professional HVAC installation technicians know how to carefully and professionally set up these systems to minimize errors that could affect the overall lifespan of the systems.
How to Know When my Furnace Needs to be Replaced?
As mentioned earlier, your furnace’s useful life may not hit the minimum average lifespan of 15 years. Some heating systems will fail even before hitting 12 years, while others will last as long as 35 years. So, how do I know when my furnace needs to be replaced?
Frequent repairs and high maintenance bills
If the last month has seen you hire an HVAC technician more than ten times and paid over $500 on repairs, you don’t need to be told that your furnace is ready for an upgrade. Furnaces demand more maintenance and repairs when they have used up most of their useful life. Your HVAC technician will advise you accordingly to ensure you can take suitable measures.
The furnace is not heating your home
It’s no magical tale that when the heating system runs for hours but doesn’t heat your home even after a thorough tune-up by an HVAC technician, it’s ready for an upgrade.
Furnaces with multiple worn-out components strain to heat your home and would often turn off and on unexpectedly. If that’s the stage your heating system has reached, call your HVAC to have it replaced.
High energy bills
Have you evaluated your heating energy bills recently? Did you compare the amount you paid the last few months with the one you paid last month? If you noticed a significant variance in the bills, you might want to get the furnace checked for faults.
A professional fine-tuning combined with thorough clean-up will get the furnace performing more efficiently, and you will notice a significant reduction in your energy bill next month. However, if the furnace is damaged beyond repair, none of these will salvage the situation.
What Are Some Ways to Boost the Lifespan of My Furnace?
I’m sure you would do everything it takes to see your furnace lives up to the 30th year. The maximum average of 30 years of service is, however, not easily achievable by any furnace. You need to do the following to maximize the lifespan of your furnace.
- Get the furnace filters cleaned and replaced regularly.
- Get the ducting system checked and cleaned frequently
- Get an HVAC professional to service and fine-tune your furnace every often.
- Occasionally clean the heat exchanger and motors of any existing dust and dirt elements.
- Get faulty furnace components replaced immediately to avoid straining other components.
How Long Does a Furnace Last – Conclusion
The last thing you want to deal with is a furnace that has served you for only five years to start demanding more on repair costs, energy bills, and failing to operate efficiently. How long does a furnace last? Furnaces fail before hitting the average of 15 years if they don’t get premium maintenance and tune-ups.