For many homeowners, buying and installing a new furnace is a major undertaking. After all, it's likely to be one of the most expensive investments you'll make in your home. You want to be certain that your home actually needs a new furnace before spending thousands of dollars on your home's heating and cooling needs.


Fortunately, it doesn't take much to find out whether or not your home needs a new furnace. The following are five signs to look out for when it comes to replacing your heating system.


Unreliable Heat

Imagine turning on your furnace during a chilly morning only to get nothing but cold air in return. Now imagine that this happens sporadically, with many a cold moment spent in waiting until your furnace finally swings into action. Poor reliability can make it exceptionally difficult to keep your home warm throughout the fall and winter months.


There are plenty of reasons why your furnace may suddenly become unreliable, including poor or nonexistent maintenance and premature component failures caused by defects or excessive use. Buying an oversized or undersized furnace can also lead to reliability problems later on.


If your furnace is no longer able to deliver consistent, reliable heat throughout your entire home, then it should be replaced with a newer and more reliable unit.


Strange Noises

Despite being designed to operate as silently as possible, furnaces can become quite the outspoken machinery when they fall under distress. In fact, one of the best ways to find out what's wrong with a typical furnace is to listen for the noises it will inevitably make.


For instance, a faulty drive belt or a blower fan motor in need of repair or lubrication may produce squealing sounds of varying pitches, depending on the severity of the problem. Loud, rhythmic thumping noises often suggest fan blades coming into contact with their housing, while constant clicking noises point towards faulty relays or a faulty igniter.


These and a variety of other noises usually indicate that your furnace has seen better days. Although routine maintenance is important, it may be time to have your heating system replaced.


Higher Energy Bills

It's no secret that nearly half of a typical home's annual energy consumption is geared towards heating and cooling. This makes heating your home one of the largest expenses you can expect during the cold weather months. A furnace that's in good shape will produce affordable heat, but an aging or ailing furnace may have trouble keeping its energy consumption and energy costs in check.


Ordinary HVAC components can wear out over time, increasing the amount of energy required for these components to operate properly. Chronic repair issues, defects and outdated efficiency standards can also result in significant increases in energy consumption. Not only will you use more energy, but you'll also end up paying more for the energy your furnace consumes.


If you're looking forward to lowering your energy bills this year, you should consider having your furnace replaced with a modern unit. The latest high-efficiency furnaces offer a range of features that help reduce overall energy consumption without sacrificing heating comfort.


Advanced Age

You expect to get the most out of your heating and cooling equipment, but you shouldn't expect your furnace to last forever. Most furnaces are capable of delivering up to 20 years of reliable service before being replaced with a newer unit. Some can even operate for 30 years or more with the right amount of care and maintenance.


Holding on to an old furnace might seem like the economical way to go, but it could actually cost you money in the long run. Not only do older furnaces use more energy than their newer counterparts, but constant repairs could cause the cost of owning one of these relics to skyrocket.


If it's been 15 years since you've replaced your furnace, you should get ready to replace your current unit with one that offers better efficiency, more features and improved performance.  


Health Hazards

A furnace that's in dire need of replacement can also pose a safety risk for you and anyone else in your home. For instance, a cracked heat exchanger or a rusted flue pipe can let exhaust gases seep back into your home's living spaces. With carbon monoxide a common byproduct of the combustion process, it's easy to see the danger an ailing furnace can pose to your family.


In addition to keeping your home's carbon monoxide detectors in good condition year-round, it's also important to have your furnace inspected by a seasoned professional. You should also be prepared to replace your furnace if your technician recommends it.


If your furnace is showing one or more of the above signs, then it's time to find a suitable replacement. Fortunately, the professionals at Dick Kearsley Service Center  can help you find what you're looking for. Contact them today to get your furnace replaced.