Is your heating unit keeping you awake at night with loud booms and annoying clanks? Maybe your heating bill has spiraled out of control since the outside temperature got a bit nippy. Certain telltale signs indicate that it’s now time to swap out your old home heating system with a modern unit. It may seem more affordable to make a few quick fixes and stop your old system from squeaking or losing so much heat. However, doing so may cost more in long-term repairs. Home heating systems have a finite lifespan. When they draw close to their use-by date, they’ll cause endless stress and set your wallet back a considerable amount.

Before it becomes too costly to run, your home heating system will show some indicative signs. The best part is if you know what to look for, you can quickly save up for a new unit before the old one gives in or gets too expensive to run.

Noise/Smell

Does your house start creaking and squeaking like it’s haunted when the heating unit kicks in? Home heating equipment generally makes normal running sounds such as a continuous hum. It may also swoosh when air is flowing and softly thumb when it switches on and off. Worrisome rumbles that have you competing for decibels with the heating equipment are a signal to start shopping for a replacement. Unusual smells are an even more serious cause for concern. If your house starts smelling like rotten eggs, it’s time to call in a professional.

Temperature Fluctuations

Heating systems are designed to evenly warm up and distribute heat in every room of your house. If you start shivering one minute, sweat the next, then shiver again, your thermostat may have stopped working properly. Sometimes one room may be quite hot, while the bedroom is pretty much a freezer. This may be a sign that you’re having issues with your radiator system. Uneven temperatures are therefore a sign that your home heating system might be due for an upgrade.

Hot Boiler

Since most heat should be pushed into your home, an efficient boiler should hardly emit any heat. Heaters like the Baxi Duo Tec Boiler have an idle mode, where they reduce or stop generating heat when your house is warm enough. As such, the boiler doesn’t waste energy or end up getting hot. If your boiler has high idle losses, especially during the warmer months — you guessed it — it could be time to consider upgrading your system.

The $5,000 Rule

Heating systems need a bit of TLC once in a while, but there’s a point where even minor repairs become pointless. As they get older, home heating systems tend to need more frequent and more costly repairs. If your home’s heating unit seems to require more maintenance than usual, you can use the $5,000 rule to decide whether to repair or replace it. Simply multiply the cost of repairs by the age of your unit. For example, if you have a 10-year-old unit that needs $600 worth of repairs, it’d exceed $5,000 and thus be suitable for replacement. If it were a 5-year-old unit, on the other hand, you’d be wise to get it repaired.

Improve Your Home’s Market Value

Finally, if you’re looking to put your home up for sale or rental soon, upgrading the heating unit may make it more attractive. When prospective tenants or buyers tour homes, they usually note items that may need repairs or replacement after they move in. With more homebuyers seeking more energy-efficient and eco-friendly appliances, upgrading your heating system is one of the best ways to get your home off the market in a flash. In addition, real estate evaluators pay attention to home heating systems, so you definitely want to get your house valued as high as possible before it’s up for sale.

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