Do you dread watching the weather forecast because you know the furnace in your Waterford, MI home is no longer up to the challenge of a winter cold snap? Does your heating system seem to be breaking down repeatedly? Those are two of the common reasons to consider a heating system replacement. The good news is a new furnace will be more efficient, cutting your heating bills and also making you more comfortable on those cold winter nights. Here are some things Kotz Heating, Cooling & Plumbing wants you to know about replacing your furnace.
Repair vs replace
This is always a tough decision to make. Here’s one guideline Kotz uses. If your current furnace is beyond three-fourths of its life expectancy AND the repair is going to cost more than a third of what a new furnace would cost, THEN a heating replacement is the best choice. The average lifespan of a furnace is around 12-15 years.
Understand the math of efficiency
The standard furnace efficiency today is 80%. Depending on how old your current furnace is, it may be only 60 or 70 percent efficient. Today’s high-efficiency furnaces can have an AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency) rating as high as 98%. Let’s keep this simple by using round numbers. If your annual fuel cost is $2,000 a year and you change from an 80% efficient furnace to 95% you will save $300 a year. If the high-efficiency furnace costs $1,500 more up front, your heating replacement will pay for itself in five years and make a profit for you for the next eight to ten years. That is a good return on investment.
Don’t forget about the ductwork
The furnace is just one part of a heating replacement. Your home’s ductwork can be a big energy waster. In many situations it’s because heated air is escaping into an unheated attic, crawlspace, or basement, wasting up to a third of your conditioned air. A good contractor like Kotz will check the ducts, improve or replace the insulation, and fix any gaps or leaks. This can offer just as much of a return on investment as the high-efficiency furnace itself.
Reduce your home’s heating demand
An energy audit is also a good investment as part of a heating replacement. You may find your Waterford, MI home needs drastic improvement in your attic and wall insulation. Once again you need to do the math based on the cost estimate. If your home has substandard insulation, you might be able to cut your heating demand by 20% or more. Even modest insulation upgrades can save five percent.
Call us first
If you have more questions or are thinking it’s time to consider a heating replacement in your Waterford, MI home, make the first call to Kotz Heating, Cooling & Plumbing to schedule your free, no-obligation estimate. For more great information about what Kotz can do for you, be sure to like and follow us on Facebook and Twitter