1. Do I really need to clean and tune my heating system every year?
Short answer: Yes. Reasons why:
- A lot can happen in one year – deteriorating components, debris on burners, build-up in exhaust vents and flues, etc.
- Newer furnaces have sophisticated equipment that needs to be tuned regularly
- A precision tune-up, cleaning and safety inspection provides peace of mind and helps ensure safe operation for you and your family
- Your service tech can catch issues before they become costly problems
- Changing filters will improve efficiency, air flow, and reduce allergens
- When tuned properly, your system will operate at its highest efficiency to save money
2. How long will my equipment last?
- Water heaters: 9 to 11 years
- Furnaces: 16 to 18 years
- Central air: 15 to 18 years
Of course, these are averages so longer (and shorter) useful equipment lives are possible. Proper maintenance of your systems will extend their life cycle and ensure efficient operation.
3. Why doesn’t our heating or A/C system keep our entire house evenly warm or cool?
There are common culprits here, and a home energy audit can provide definitive answers. Very often we find that, in forced air systems, the ductwork is not properly adjusted or insulated. There are dampers on ducts that can easily be adjusted, but your winter settings should probably be different than your summer ones. Improper insulation levels and air loss and infiltration also make some areas colder or warmer than others.
4. How do I know what system to buy?
You can only know for sure when a knowledgeable HVAC professional visits your home, takes a thorough look, and asks you the right questions. You need an analysis that reviews your needs, house, and energy bills – and considers all the key criteria. Your contractor should discuss:
- All the different options and solutions
- Pros and cons of each potential system
- Differences in cost and payback time frame
- Anticipated comfort levels and other key factors
- The size of your home including a heat loss/gain calculation that determines the necessary size of equipment
To create the best, personalized solution for your home, your contractor needs all the right answers. This is how we approach every home comfort project at Isaac.
By Jake Coleman
Residential Service Manager