Maybe you’re in the market for a new furnace. Maybe you recently installed a new unit in your home. Perhaps you have an older furnace and you’re wondering if it’s on its last legs.

Regardless of your circumstances, it’s common to ask yourself this question: how long does a furnace last?

While there’s no one size fits all answer, there is some general advice that can point you in the right direction.

Factors that Affect the Lifespan of a Furnace

There are several factors that can affect the lifespan of your furnace, with these among the most important:

  • The age of the furnace at purchase: It may sound strange to you, but some homeowners purchase a pre-owned furnace with the intention of saving money. While this is an option, it’s not one you should consider if you want to get as much life out of your unit as possible. A new furnace is typically the best option, as long as it fits your budget.
  • Manufacturer: Some manufacturers have a better reputation than others in regards to durability and longevity. Top choices include American Standard, Amana, Bryant, Carrier, Daikin, Lennox, and Rheem. When you buy one of these brands, you can be confident that you’ll have a furnace with the potential to last a long time.
  • Usage: Furnaces are meant to be used, but that doesn’t change the fact that this impacts its lifespan. The Boston area is known for cold temperatures during the winter months, so your furnace will run regularly. There’s no way around this.
  • Maintenance: If you don’t maintain your furnace to manufacturer specifications, it’s not likely to last as long as it should.
  • Type: Options include natural gas, oil, electric, and propane.

Now, with these details in mind, we can answer the question of how long a furnace is supposed to last.

As a general rule of thumb, you should expect a gas furnace (which is most popular) to provide reliable service for 15 to 20 years.

If you opt for an electric furnace—also a popular choice—it has the potential to last as long as 30 years.

When to Replace Your Furnace

As long as your furnace is safe and provides reliable service, there’s no good reason to replace it.

However, if your furnace is beginning to show signs of its age, you should consider making a change in the near future.

Here are some of the many signs that it’s time to replace your furnace:

  • It doesn’t turn on and off as it should
  • Higher than average heating costs
  • The air coming from your vents isn’t as hot as it should be
  • Temperature fluctuations
  • Strange noises coming from your unit

It’s your hope that your furnace lasts a minimum of 15 years, but you never know what could happen.

Regardless of the current age of your furnace, don’t hesitate to take action if it requires a repair or a replacement is in the cards. Contact us for professional guidance and answers to all your questions.

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