Did You Remember to Ask About the HVAC Unit When You Went House Hunting?

Before making a buying decision on a new home, it’s a good idea to ask a few pertinent HVAC questions relating to the property. In most houses, the furnace and central air conditioner together represent the single most expensive replaceable component.

Therefore, the more you know about the heating and cooling system before you buy a house, the more comfortable and confident you’ll feel the day you move in. Here are some HVAC questions to ask while on the hunt for a new home.

  • How old are the furnace and the A/C? The service life of gas furnaces is typically about 20 years, while central air conditioners last 12 to 15 years. Should either unit require costly work after two-thirds of its expected service life has elapsed, however, replacement — not repair — is usually the recommended option. Therefore, it’s wise to figure that an HVAC unit that now exceeds the two-thirds age mark will likely impose the expense of replacement during the time period in which you own the house.
  • Have recent repairs been made? It’s a good thing to find out now. First, it may tell you something about the accumulated wear and tear on the entire system. Also, it may indicate that annual preventative maintenance by a qualified HVAC technician has been neglected. On the other hand, repair of more minor “nuisance” issues like a flakey thermostat or a squeaky blower can actually be a good sign that these headaches have been resolved so you won’t have to worry about them.
  • What are monthly heating/cooling costs? Real estate websites often post average monthly utility costs for a designated area. It’s helpful to know where any house you’re considering stands in that range. If costs are higher than similar homes, it could be a tipoff that the HVAC system is consuming excess energy — maybe a major issue or maybe it just needs a tuneup — or that the system runs extended cycles due to poor performance or issues like insufficient insulation.

The professionals at Paitson Bros., your local source of helpful HVAC information since 1922, are happy to advise you about asking the right questions before buying a house.

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    Jeff Paitson Jeff Paitson is a third generation business owner who continues to run the business with the same values that have been passed down from previous generations since 1922.

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    Ethan Ethan Rayburn is a lifelong resident of Terre Haute and a 2005 graduate of Purdue University.

    An Eagle Scout, Ethan spent four years as a non-profit executive with the Boy Scouts of America before joining Paitson Bros. as a comfort advisor and later General Manager. In that role, Ethan has brought a renewed enthusiasm for customer care, integrity, value, and service to Paitson Bros. Heating & Air Conditioning.

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