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Cool Touch Air Conditioning and Heating Blog

The Smart Way to Replacing Your Old Heating System

If your heating system is less than 15 years old, it should still have some life left in it. You can expect as many as 15 to 20 years of service from properly installed and maintained heating equipment. To help make this long service life a reality, it is a good idea to have your heating system inspected and adjusted on an annual basis. If your system is over 10 years old, then you should definitely place it on an annual maintenance program. Good preventive maintenance will ensure that your system runs safely and efficiently for a long time.

Eventually, an older system may need to be replaced. You should replace your heating system when it is no longer cost effective to keep it in good working order. When trying to decide how to select a new heating unit, and even better, what heating contractor your going to hire for the job, you should follow these tips:

Don’t go with the lowest bid
Service calls are twice as likely to be related to poor installation as to defective equipment. The guy with the lowest bid often makes the biggest mistakes.

Contractor markup
The heating contractor actually pays about $300 to $500 more for a 95 percent furnace than he does for a 90 percent furnace. If that added cost is passed through with little markup, you might be able to justify it. If the contractor marks up the price a whole bunch, then you have no chance of making a payback in your lifetime.

Have a pro install a new thermostat
Furnaces and thermostats, just like cars, have gotten increasingly computerized, and they can require some pretty serious know-how to get them to work right.

High vs. very high efficiencies
Higher efficiency means higher complexity. The more complex it is, the more expensive it is, and the more it will cost to fix when it breaks. Generally, your best value is to get a 92 percent efficiency furnace with one of the new ECM fan motors.

Get a proposal, not a bid
Go with someone who provides a detailed written proposal that outlines exactly what he will and won’t do. He should list the manufacturer and model number of the proposed equipment as well as the cost of any plumbing, venting changes or electrical work required.

Buy a reputable brand
Stick with the major brands or one of their subsidiaries. If you don’t recognize the brand, do your own checking online before you buy.

You may need a smaller furnace
Older furnaces were usually oversized so that the house was always warm enough. But new higher efficiency furnaces can have a lower Btu rating and still put out the same amount of heat.

Follow these tips when it comes time to replace your old heating system. You want to make sure that you’re making the best decision based on what fits your homes needs. If you need additional assistance please don’t hesitate to call the professionals at Cool Touch Air and Heating. We’ll help you every step of the way. 623-584-3762

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