How Long Does an Oil Furnace Last?

Have issues with your oil furnace? Wondering when it’s time to replace it?

Your oil furnace should last around 20 to 25 years. If you took good care of it, expect it to last longer. If you used your furnace heavily, then its life span will be shorter.

Below you’ll find signs that it’s time to replace your furnace and how much it’ll cost to replace.

Let’s get started

How Long Does an Oil Furnace Last?

Oil furnaces should last around 20 to 25 years. Depending on how much you use your oil furnace, it may have a longer or shorter life expectancy.

If you kept up with your regular maintenance schedule, your oil furnace should last at least 15 years.

You should expect to make some repairs throughout you furnace’s life expectancy as some parts are expected to fail before it reaches the end of its life around 25 years.

Sadly, you’ll find in most cases that the warranty will expire before your furnace goes out.

You can always look into extending your warranty, but it’s always a good idea to keep up with furnace maintenance regardless.

If you have a natural gas furnace, you should expect it to last a bit longer at 15-30 years.

Depending on how well you take care of your heating system will determine its life expectancy.

Signs Your Oil Furnace Needs Repair

1. Energy bills are sky high

If your energy bills are much higher than expected, it could be a sign that your furnace is on its way out.

As time goes on, your furnace will lose efficiency and will need to run longer to heat your home.

2. Your furnace is older than 15 years

As your furnace reaches the later stages of its life, you’ll run into more problems.

If you haven’t ever had furnace repairs done, it’s a good idea to look into having a service technician do a checkup.

3. Your furnace isn’t heating properly

Uneven heating is a signal that your furnace isn’t operating properly.

If some rooms are getting hotter faster than other rooms, then your furnace may have issues with the blower motor.

4. Furnace is short cycling

Another sign that your furnace system is having issues is that your furnace is short cycling.

Short cycling is when your furnace has 8 or more cycles per hour.

If it’s fairly cold out, then your furnace may just be running more to keep your house warm.

5. Furnace is making strange sounds

As the internal components of your oil furnace wear out, they will start to make strange sounds like thumps, scrapes, bangs, and dings.

These sounds are an indication that something is wrong with your furnace and needs to be checked out.

6. Your family is getting sick

A cracked heat exchanger can cause carbon monoxide leaks.

If your family is showing signs of carbon monoxide poisoning like dizziness, headaches, feeling sick, feeling weak, confusion, or chest and muscle pain, then you should shut off your furnace immediately and call a technician.

7. You call the repair man often

If you’re calling the repair man every month, then you’re spending more than you would have if you had replaced your furnace.

A new furnace will reduce your heating bills and give you much less headache throughout the winter.

Should You Repair or Replace Your Furnace?

You should consider replacing your furnace if you’ve reached the later stages of your furnace life expectancy.

If your furnace should is rated to last 25 years but it’s 20 years old and in need of repair, it’s a good idea to consider a replacement.

A new oil furnace should cost anywhere from $5000 to $9000 to replace depending on where you live.

While the price can seem staggering, these devices should last more than 20 years if taken care of properly.

Should I get a New Gas or Electric Furnace?

An electric furnace will be safer than a gas (or oil furnace).

A gas furnace will be more efficient than an oil or electric furnace.

What you decide to buy is dependent on what you value. If you prefer safety, go with an electric. If you choose an efficient furnace, go with a gas furnace.

When to Call an HVAC Technician?

Your furnace being over 20 years old is a good signal that it may be at the end of its life.

You can consider doing repairs, or replacing it all together depending on the price of the repairs.

If you or your family are showing signs of carbon monoxide poisoning, then you should leave your house and call an HVAC technician immediately.

It’s better to be safe than sorry when dealing with a heating system.

About Roy Cohen

Roy Cohen has a burning passion for heating, cooling, and ventilation. He aims to help you save money on expensive repairs and bring you the best HVAC products. He has years of experience behind him in HVAC repair and garage maintenance.

You can find Roy at his LinkedIn or his email: [email protected]

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