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How to Identify an Aging Furnace

Posted: 2019-12-19

Trying to keep up with an old, inefficient furnace isn’t a simple issue. In fact, it is dangerous. Dealing with an aging heating system can be harmful to your health and your family’s safety.

Maybe you’re unsure if your existing furnace is already in the final years of its life. On average, residential furnaces are useful for up to 15 years, depending on the level of maintenance and usage.

Just like any other appliance that’s going downhill, a failing furnace will show signs of deterioration before it officially stops working. Paying close attention to these details will prepare you for the inevitable system replacement sooner or later. Being aware of such signs will help you what to look for in a furnace and save you a lot of money in the long run.

As your trusted heating company in North Oaks MN, Four Seasons Air Specialists offers you assistance in identifying a declining furnace as well as presenting you with viable, long-term solutions.

The Dangers of an Inefficient Furnace

The risk of operating an old, inefficient furnace has to do with its age and heat source. Old gas furnaces, particularly those that are improperly maintained, are at a high risk of releasing carbon monoxide. This is a colorless, odorless gas that is proven to be fatal, especially when a person is exposed to significant amounts of this chemical over an extended period of time. Since your furnace circulates heated air all throughout your home, it can also carry with it deadly amounts of carbon dioxide without you even realizing it. Since this is an odorless gas, it can be quite challenging to identify whether your ductwork has a leak. However, if you or your family members exhibit flu-like symptoms, this could mean that there is a carbon monoxide leak in your home.

Here are warning signs of an aging furnace:

Inexplicable Increase in Your Heating Costs

It’s one thing to have fuel costs hikes but to see a significant increase in your heating bills without a comparable increase in use is another. An unfathomable growth in your heating bills is a clear indication of a failing furnace. Evaluate your heating costs from last year’s fall and winter and compare them with the latest ones. Write down the amount of energy your furnace is using and cross check it with the difference in dollar amount between bills. This will give you a measurable data on how your furnace has been performing lately.

Loud Noises While the Furnace is Running

A properly performing heating system produces minimal operational sound — it should be virtually inaudible. However, when your unit begins to make annoying noises while running, it could mean certain parts are failing or the entire system needs replacing. Some of the most common noises include rattling, popping, hissing, humming, and screeching. Here are some of the causes of each individual sound your furnace could be making:

  • Rattling can be due to a loose duct or furnace part. To identify which specific part is loose, be sure to call a qualified HVAC technician
  • Popping can be caused by parts affected by fluctuating temperatures within the system
  • Hissing sounds can be heard when air is escaping from your system. If the noise is coming from the walls, it could mean the ducts are leaking. This also calls for a technician’s skills and knowledge
  • Screeching sounds indicate a damaged furnace blower motor, a belt, or a pulley
  • Clicking noises can be caused by a problem with the flame sensor or the ignition system
  • A booming sound is one of the most dangerous noises a furnace can make. It can be caused by severe gas emission and requires immediate professional attention.

Subpar Heating

A healthy furnace should be able to effortlessly reach your desired temperature. However, if it fails to satisfy your comfort needs, it could mean that the system is overheating and shutting itself off before it even reaches the proper temperature. Aging parts can be attributed to a system’s lack of heating power.

Furnace Problems? Call the Heating Pros

If you notice any of these signs, call Four Seasons Air Specialists. We would like to help you ensure you and your family’s comfort and safety. Our certified technicians will diagnose the problem and present real solutions. We are your preferred White Bear furnace installation company.