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How to Extend the Life of an HVAC System and Get More Bang for Your BuckHomeowners can extend the life of an HVAC system by observing maintenance guidelines suggested by the manufacturers. It’s equally possible to reduce the expected service life of a system by neglecting recommended procedures. The industry benchmark for residential HVAC service life is 15 years. That’s an averaged figure assuming 10- to 15-year life for a central air conditioner and 15 to 20 years for a gas-fired furnace. Many will last longer—some will fail sooner. Factors that influence system life include:

  • Quality of manufacture
  • System design
  • Daily hours of usage
  • Competent installation
  • Regular maintenance
  • Local climate

Not all of these are under your control. Here’s what you can do to extend to the life of an HVAC system and get the most from your investment.

  • Change the air filter monthly. Proper system airflow impacts almost all parameters including wear and tear. Buying filters in multiple packs is cost efficient and changing them is a straightforward DIY procedure.
  • Maintain outdoor components. The outside condenser coil and fan should be kept clear of encroaching vegetation that obstructs air flow through the housing vents. Also, once a year shut off electricity to the unit and hose down the coil to remove dust, grass clippings, leaves and other debris.
  • Allow full air circulation. Don’t close supply vents in unused rooms. It doesn’t reduce operating costs and can disrupt the home’s air balance, causing the heating or cooling system to run extended cycles and incur more wear and tear.
  • Vacuum the grilles. Supply and return vents in individual rooms are a magnet for dust accumulation. Even small amounts of visible dust lower airflow through the vents and affect system performance and operating condition.
  • Keep vents open. High-efficiency furnaces incorporate a PVC vent pipe that terminates outdoors. Make sure it’s kept clear of ice, snow and other obstructions. Standard furnaces exhaust to the roof through a metal vent. For home safety and system life, this should be inspected as part of an annual furnace check-up.

For more advice to extend the life of an HVAC system, in Farmington and Grosse Point contact Aladdin Heating & Cooling Company.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Warren, Michigan about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about HVAC systems and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

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