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How Long Does a Furnace Last? A Quick Guide

How long does a furnace last? Different sources will give you different answers. Some say 15 years, some say 20. Others say newer furnaces can last as long as 30 years.

Those answers are all technically correct. But it’s important to remember that several factors influence how long a furnace lasts, including:

  • the type of furnace
  • when the furnace was made
  • how well and how often it’s maintained

Generally, the average lifespan of a furnace is between 12 and 18 years. On average, a furnace needs replacing after 15 years. Some newer models can last between 20 and 30 years.

How do you know if your furnace needs replacing? Check out our related guide, “Should you repair or replace your furnace?

Let’s explore which factors affect your furnace’s lifespan. (Plus a few things you can do to keep your furnace in good condition.)

Types of furnaces

When you think of furnaces, you probably picture a gas furnace. That’s just one type of furnace. Let’s take a look at a few others.

Gas furnaces

Gas furnaces are one of the most common types of residential furnaces. Natural gas heats nearly 50% of American homes. In Colorado and surrounding states, that number is slightly higher at over 65%.

Older gas furnaces aren’t as efficient as their newer counterparts. New models are up to 98% efficient, compared to older models with a maximum efficiency of 65%. Additionally, older furnaces aren’t as durable, lasting between 12 and 18 years on average.

How many years should a gas furnace last? That largely depends on when it was made and how well it’s maintained. New models could last as long as 30 years. On average, gas furnaces last between 16 and 20 years.

Oil furnaces

You won’t find many oil furnaces in Colorado. These are most common in the Northeast. While they’re less expensive than a gas furnace, they’re also less efficient at 85% on average. They do tend to last a little longer, with an average lifespan of 25 years.

Electric furnaces

Many modern homes come equipped with an electric furnace. This type of furnace is just as efficient as a new gas furnace and can last up to 10 years longer. The unit itself is less expensive than a gas furnace. But the higher cost of electricity will quickly surpass those initial savings.

Maintain your furnace to maximize its lifespan

The average lifespans we’ve mentioned above assume that the furnace is serviced each year. Without annual maintenance, a furnace likely won’t last as long as they could.

Annual maintenance can prevent minor issues from escalating into major repairs. It also protects your warranty’s eligibility. Some manufacturers void the warranties of units that aren’t inspected regularly.

Finally, proper maintenance ensures your furnace works at peak efficiency all winter long. A local furnace repair technician can replace clogged filters and worn-out parts before they cause bigger problems.

How to maintain your furnace

If you’re like many homeowners, you might search for DIY fixes before calling in the professionals. But your furnace is a complex machine. Not to mention a dangerous one, especially if something goes wrong during a DIY repair.

Attempting to fix something yourself can cause anything from fire hazards to carbon monoxide poisoning. To keep your home and family safe, avoid attempting to service your furnace yourself. Instead, call your local furnace repair technician. Watch them while they work and ask them to walk you through the process. They’ll guide you through maintaining your furnace safely step-by-step.

Any furnace repair company that doesn’t allow you to be part of the process isn’t worth your time or hard-earned money. As the premier Denver furnace repair business, we take great pride in educating our customers. We believe all homeowners should know how their systems work. This not only prevents problems, but it also teaches you how to recognize and respond to furnace-related hazards.

How long will a furnace last? Wrapping up

Ultimately, how long your furnace lasts depends on how well you take care of it. Keep your furnace in tip-top shape and it could serve you for 20 years or even longer. If your furnace is 15 years or older and requires constant repairs, it’s time to start shopping for a new one.

Rather than trying to maintain your furnace yourself, book a service appointment with a professional. It’s as easy as searching “furnace repair near me”.

Book your Denver furnace repair or tune-up today

Winter has arrived early this year in the Mile High City. Book your Denver furnace repair or maintenance appointment today to stay toasty all winter long. Our expert technicians are trained to service all types of furnaces. We pride ourselves on delivering prompt, polite, and professional service — rain, shine, sleet, or snow.

Booking a Denver furnace repair in 2020 is vastly different compared to previous years. Rest assured that we take every precaution to protect your family, your home, and your health during the COVID-19 pandemic. Learn more about our health and safety procedures, and let us know if you have special requirements for your appointment.

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