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Misconceptions About Furnace Repairs and Replacement 

October 22, 2019

Whether it’s an urban myth, an outdated idea, or simple misinformation, a misconception about your heating system could cause you more grief than it’s worth. Staying up-to-date on correct information can help you take better care of your furnace and perhaps even get more use out of it.

Here’s an explanation of some misconceptions about furnace repairs and replacements.

An Oversized Furnace Isn’t a Big Problem: False

Installing an oversized furnace may sound like a good idea, since it will give you plenty of heat for those wintertime cold snaps. But in fact, an oversized furnace can be just as much of a problem as an undersized one, just in a different way.

One reason an oversized furnace is problematic is because it can make temperature balancing in your home more difficult. The furnace may blow a huge amount of warm air for a short time, then stop. This is called short cycling, and it can be problematic for comfort because some areas of the home may not heat up properly during a short cycle.

Short cycles are also potentially problematic for your furnace itself. That’s because the frequent startups and shorter cycles can lead to more stress and wear. This not only increases your energy bills (since starting the furnace frequently is more energy intensive than letting it run for a full, normal cycle), but when repeated daily, short cycles can even decrease furnace lifespan.

Efficient Furnaces Are the Be-All and End-All of Home Efficiency: False

You’re correct in thinking that an efficient furnace can help heat your home better with less energy waste. But this equation has many more factors in play as well. Leaky ductwork could vent heated air into your crawlspace. Uninsulated windows could make your rooms feel drafty, and air leaks (such as holes under your bathtub) could leak air around the clock.

Yes, without an efficient furnace, you’d be wasting even more energy. However, you can’t simply install an efficient furnace and expect it to also fix missing insulation, air leaks, and other efficiency issues as well. You’ll need to tackle both sides of the equation to get the results you want.

Furnace Filters Are a Minor Issue: False

Furnace filters may seem like a minor, routine issue. But a neglected filter can turn into a huge repair bill. Although the filter is designed to remove dust and other contaminants while letting air flow through, the reverse can happen if the filter becomes too clogged. Trapped dust will start making its way through the filter, while airflow will reduce significantly.

Unfortunately, the reduced airflow caused by a blocked filter can then make the furnace run poorly and can even cause malfunctions. Overheating is one example of a malfunction that could be caused by a dirty filter.

The Cheapest Estimate Is Always the Best: False

While you shouldn’t blindly pay a high price for furnace work and hope it’ll turn out okay, the reverse is also true: a price that seems remarkably low may be that way for a reason. For instance, an underqualified contractor doesn’t have to factor education and licensing costs (and ancillary costs, such as insurance required for the license) into their pricing.

You should also get your estimates in writing so you can read the fine print before you compare them. One contractor may be planning a more thorough job than another, which could be one reason for the higher price quote.

As you can see, furnace repair and replacements can be a complicated issue that requires consideration from all angles. For more information on repairs or replacements for your furnace, get in touch with  Comfort Solutions
 to discuss how we can help you keep your home comfortable this winter without breaking the bank.