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5 Pitfalls To Avoid When Buying A New Furnace

5 Pitfalls to Avoid When Buying a New FurnaceBuying a new furnace is a major home purchase whose consequences will be felt for years to come.

That is why it’s essential that you shop smartly and avoid buying the wrong one for your home. And you can’t afford to make mistakes when thousands of dollars are at stake when buying a new furnace for the home.

While cost is a prime consideration when buying a new furnace, you should look at several other factors otherwise, you will end up losing money in the long run. The consequences of making a bad choice are many.

Here are 5 mistakes that you should avoid when buying a new furnace that can light your wallet on fire.

1. Focusing too much on costs

The most common mistake that you should avoid when buying a new furnace is to focus too much on the cost. A lower cost unit might seem a better deal as compared to a costly unit. However, in most cases, low cost also translates into less energy efficiency. This means that any amount that you save when buying a low-cost unit will be negated due to higher bills over the long term.

2. Buying a furnace with a low SEER rating

You must never overlook the Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) when buying a new furnace. The SEER ratio tells about the efficiency with which the furnace heats up the room. Units that have a low SEER will result in substantially more energy bills as compared to those with a high SEER rating.

Ideally, you should buy a new furnace with a SEER rating of above 17. Avoid buying a unit with a rating below 12 as it can cost a lot in terms of high energy bills.

3. Overlooking rebate opportunities

Many manufacturers and states offer rebates on certain models. The rebates offered by the manufacturer can be as much as $1,000. That’s why you should always search online to find out whether the company offers rebates or discounts. However, again keep in mind that cost should not be your main focus and look at other aspects to ensure that you are getting the best bang for the bucks.

4. Selecting the wrong type of fuel

Keep in mind that not all furnaces use the same heating source. Some use methane (natural gas) while others use propane (LPG) or electricity. Generally, natural gas heaters are the most energy efficient option as compared to the others. However, you can’t use gas furnace unless you install a gas supply line. So, it’s important that you consider this option before paying for a new furnace.

5. Not scheduling maintenance for your new furnace

Maintenance contracts are necessary to ensure that your furnace performs without breaking down during the middle of the winter. You must ensure to sign up for an annual maintenance with a reputable furnace repair and maintenance company. Regular maintenance will ensure that the system performs without any major problems for a long time.

If you want to get in touch with experienced and reliable furnace repair and installation firm in the Bay Area, you can contact ABC Cooling, Heating & Plumbing.

Signs that you need professional furnace repair

It’s a cold winter night here in Hayward, and you’re a few weeks into using your furnace for the season. Suddenly, it stops working, leaving your home without heat. Or, maybe you see your energy bill spike. Or, something smells weird or you’ve been hearing strange sounds coming from the furnace. Why is the blower fan constantly running?

Truth is, there’s a lot that can go wrong with a furnace, and that’s why ABC Cooling, Heating & Plumbing offers professional furnace service to homeowners in Hayward and much of the Bay Area. In this blog post, we break down some of the most common signs that indicate that it’s time to have an expert ABC technician look at your system.

Professional Furnace Service Hayward

When something goes wrong with your furnace, call ABC for professional furnace service

Out-of-control energy bills

You think your furnace is running great. Your home is cozy, but you haven’t been doing anything excessive temperature-wise and you’ve been smart about turning it off during the day. Then, you open your November energy bill and your costs are much, much higher than you expected, and certainly far above where they were the previous year. If your heating use didn’t change, then what happened?

A mechanical or airflow problem with an otherwise great-functioning furnace can cause your system to work harder to heat your home, burning far more energy in the process. Take the system’s air filters, for instance: as they become clogged with dirt and dust, the furnace has to double its efforts to circulate the home through your vents into your living spaces. A mechanical issue could also cause constant cycling for the furnace, or a blower that runs continuously.

These energy bills can start to add up. Address the issue head-on by giving ABC a call for professional furnace service. You may also want to consider getting a new furnace: most furnaces last between 12-15 years, and an aging furnace can encounter performance issues as time goes on.

No heat, or limited heat

You turn up the heat in your home, but, after time passes, you notice that the thermostat isn’t changing. The furnace sounds like it’s running, but there’s no hot air coming out of the vents. This could be a sign that something is wrong with your furnace, or that it needs to be replaced through our furnace installation.

It’s possible that your furnace just has a clogged filter that is restricting airflow to your home’s ducts. However, the problem could be more serious. It might have a mechanical issue that is preventing it from operating properly, or that the thermostat is having issues connecting to the furnace. Listen for any noises or patterns. One common effect of a clogged filter is a furnace that keeps cycling on and off continuously, never really heating the space or sending heat through the vents.

Then, give ABC a call for professional furnace repair. Our experienced technicians will diagnose the problem and provide you with an upfront, honest estimate for how much the repair will cost. We’ll get heat going in your house in no time.

Strange noises or odors

As you might expect, any strange noises or odors coming out of your furnace and your home’s air ducts may indicate a serious problem. You shouldn’t be hearing any rattling, rumbling, grinding, or squeaking. Such sounds are a sign that something is wrong mechanically with the system, and ignoring them (if you can even sleep through them!) could be a mistake that could end up destroying the entire furnace for good. The best thing to do is to call ABC for emergency service. We don’t charge you anything extra for work on weekends or holidays, and our friendly techs are always willing to help you find the source of any obnoxious furnace noises—and provide you with the professional furnace repair you need.

Odors are another problem. It’s not uncommon to have odor problems as a result of dirty air ducts—our indoor air quality testing can help with this—but a burning smell or any smoke coming from your vents is obviously not a good thing. Turn off the system immediately and call ABC for emergency, professional furnace repair.

Call us for professional furnace service

Worried about other signs of furnace trouble that we didn’t cover here? This infographic has some handy tips on other signals of furnace problems. You should also note that you can prevent most of the furnace issues listed here by scheduling your annual furnace tune-up with the professionals at ABC. Our technicians will make sure your furnace is in great shape for the winter ahead, which reduces the changes of weird noises, smells, bills, or performance.

If you need professional furnace service and repair, give ABC a call at (510) 471-8181, or contact us online. We look forward to helping make your home warm and cozy again!

Furnace repair versus replacement

When your furnace dies for good, the furnace repair versus replacement debate is settled. You’ll need to get a new furnace. That’s an easy decision. However, what if it’s possible to fix your current furnace? Are there any advantages to choosing to upgrade to a new system when your current furnace technically still works?

In this blog post, we’ll weigh in on the furnace repair versus replacement debate that all homeowners have at some point, and discuss some reasons that changing to a new furnace makes sense.

How do I decide between furnace repair versus replacement?

As we discussed last month, decisions about furnace repair versus replacement often come down to the age of the system. As a furnace ages, the money you spend repairing it has diminishing returns. After all, furnaces become less energy efficient and more likely to break down as they age. If your furnace is more than 10 years old, it’s time to start thinking about replacing it. If it’s more than 20, you should probably make the switch.

Here are some other things to consider when debating furnace repair versus replacement:

  • Your future energy costs: An older furnace uses more energy than a new one, both because of age and because the technology used to construct new systems has improved significantly in the past decade. You can better energy efficiency out of your furnace with a furnace tune-up, but even that only goes so far. Every winter that you run your old system, you’re losing out on potential energy savings. Take that into your cost consideration.
  • Your future repair costs: Not only are older furnaces more likely to break down after years of heavy use, but the manufacturer’s warranty that protects them has usually expired by that point. This means you’re paying for any needed repairs out-of-pocket. If furnace repairs are adding up, consider how saving on repair factors into your buying decision.
  • Your future home comfort: In addition to being inefficient and more likely to break down, older furnaces often have difficulty heating like they once did. This can result in cold spots, inconsistent heating, and constant, noisy running. If your home’s comfort matters, take that into consideration when you’re debating between furnace repair versus replacement.

How to decide between furnace repair versus replacementHow do I get started?

ABC Cooling, Heating & Plumbing offers both heating repair and heating installation services. We recommend starting with furnace repair. Give us a call, and we’ll send a technician out to inspect your system and determine what the problem is. From there, we’ll give you an upfront, honest quote for how much it’d take to repair the system. This may factor heavily into your furnace repair versus replacement decision, so it’s good to have that upfront.

From there, you may decide that you want to get a new furnace. We can help with that, as well. We offer a free in-home estimate on new furnaces, and we’ll measure your home to help you find the perfect new system. As a Carrier Factory-Authorized Dealer, our technicians are furnace installation experts, each with years of experience. They’re also equipped with the training and tools to do the job right.

Ready to get started? Give ABC a call at (510) 471-8181, or contact us online. We look forward to speaking with you and helping you resolve the furnace repair versus replacement debate.

Replace your aging furnace with a newly installed furnace

It’s fall. The night temperatures in the Bay Area are beginning to fall, and it’s almost time to turn off the air conditioner for the year and turn on the furnace. There’s just one problem: your furnace may be older than the dinosaurs and barely made it through last winter. In fact, you had to get it repaired twice last year. Deep down, you know that you need a newly installed furnace in your home.

If you’re frugal, your first instinct is to keep running that ancient furnace until it doesn’t run anymore. After all, it’s still a furnace, and it still provides heating, right? Unfortunately, this logic just doesn’t hold up on closer examination. In this blog post, we’ll review some of the reasons that replacing an older furnace with a newly installed furnace makes more sense than running it into the ground. ABC provides furnace installation services to most of the Bay Area.

Pictured: An ABC technician works on the wiring inside of a newly installed furnace in a Bay Area home.Your old furnace is an energy hog

Your aging furnace has two things working against it. First, if it was manufactured two decades ago, it’s only as good as the technology two decades was. In 1996, not only was furnace manufacturing technology not as advanced, but there wasn’t as much of a focus on energy-efficient design. Here’s the second part of the double-whammy: furnaces get less and less efficient as they age. So, your furnace most likely has both age and design against it.

As any homeowner can tell you, energy costs can really add up throughout the year. If your furnace is running half the year and it’s inefficient, that’s a ton of extra money you’re spending every month on gas or electricity. Each season you stick it out with your current furnace, this situation will get worse and worse.

Your furnace might be performing poorly

“Okay,” you might say. “So, my old furnace is a tad on the inefficient side. At least it still runs.” While that’s true, take a moment to think: how good is the heating in your home with this older system?

In most cases, furnaces see performance dip as they age, and are no longer as good at heating your home as they were on the day they were installed. Even in the beautiful winter climate of northern California, your furnace is expected to run nearly constantly for season-after-season. Even with maintenance from a professional HVAC team, parts and the system as a whole will eventually wear down.

The result? Your home will probably experience spotty heating, complete with cold, dead zones. Sure, your kitchen is nice and toasty, but your living room is an icebox. Parts of your bedroom are hot, while others are cold. It’s an uncomfortable experience, but older furnaces can often have trouble maintaining consistent temperatures throughout an entire home.

In contrast, a new furnace will be able to do just that, keeping your home a consistent temperature.

It’s the final breakdown

When death comes for your furnace, when will it come? Will it be at 2 a.m. in December, so you and your family can wake up to a cold home in the morning? It could be anytime. Your dead furnace will no longer be able to heat your home, and you’ll have to quickly make arrangements to have it replaced. In the meantime, your home will be pretty frosty. Had you replaced your furnace before this point, you could have chosen the time and place when you changed out your furnace for a new model.

Get a newly installed furnace this fall

So far, we’ve outlined several reasons to replace your furnace this fall. Here’s another one: you’re going to really enjoy your newly installed furnace. You’ll love the consistent heating, lower energy bills, and reliability. You’ll have the peace of mind of knowing your system is covered by a manufacturer’s warranty. And when you purchase a new Carrier furnace from ABC, you’ll know that your new heating system has been professionally installed by certified technicians.

If you’re ready to make the upgrade to a new furnace that will heat your home for winters to come, contact our team. We offer free, in-home estimates on installed furnaces, and we can help you find the perfect furnace to replace your old one. Soon enough, you’ll be enjoying a warm home this winter.