Off Topics Forum - Expanded Thread Page

Subject: MIght be time for a new furnace

[Back] [Return to Top of Forum]

Farmer Dan    Posted 10-16-2017 at 09:49:44 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • MIght be time for a new furnace
  • Woke up to a cold house and no heat. Called repair man because I know my furnace is so old I'll never get it running again. He was here 10 minutes and had it working again. He said there are only 3 people in his service area that are using the old Moncrief furnaces. Naturally I'm one of them. My furnace was installed in 1964 and is the top of the line 65% efficient model. A flake of rust fell off something, landed on the pilot light and put it out. He moved the rust, lit the pilot and I've got heat again. I think if its rusting that bad and at 65% this is a good time to get a new 95% furnace.

    Mower    Posted 10-18-2017 at 09:10:03 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [No Email]  
  • Re: MIght be time for a new furnace
  • The installation quality is just as important as the quality of the system.

    Contrary to some misinformation, a quality system that is maintained will last a very long time. Our current 98% system with multiple zones, variable speed fan, and high efficiency air conditioner is closing in on 20 years old with zero problems. It heats and cools just over 4,000 square feet with an electric bill that has never exceeded $100/month. Propane costs us around $700/year depending on the current price per gallon.

    At our lake home (1,800 square feet) we replaced the late 70's vintage furnace and air conditioner 4 years ago with a similar high efficiency, high quality system. Again, there have been zero problems and operational costs are extremely low.

    The new fangled "weak point" thermostats in both systems work extremely well. We like it cool at night so it automatically drops the temperature in the winter, and in the summer sets the master suite zone for a lower temperature while keeping the rest of the house at normal temperatures. The non-mercury switch thermostats in our primary home are nearly 20 years old (Honeywell) and have worked without a single issue. The thermostat in our lake house is 4 years old, and we haven't had a single issue.

    All of our equipment is Lennox.

    You get what you pay for-buy a "builders grade" system and you can expect issues. Buy a quality system and you can expect years of trouble free service.

    steveVa    Posted 10-17-2017 at 17:36:51 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [No Email]  
  • Re: MIght be time for a new furnace
  • If you are on in town natural gas there are some really good high efficiency gas water heaters available that require very little maintenance and they are a lot less costly then a gas furnace. We use these in houses with a hot water coil installed in your AC air handler to provide a good source of primary or back up heat.

    John in Mich    Posted 10-16-2017 at 16:50:48 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [No Email]  
  • Re: MIght be time for a new furnace
  • Hey Dan, I feel the chill.
    We built this house 32 years ago with a new technology 90% natural gas furnace. The evacuation motor sounded like a jet plane taking off and it was under our bedroom. Also, it was marginal on keeping the house warm. At 0 degrees outside it would run 100% of the time and it was cold by the windows.
    Had a friend who was licensed in HVAC and he installed a very nice 97% "rated" furnace and central air for us about 11 years ago. It has been awesome! Quiet, efficient, and reliable.
    We did have a small problem with the intake air. Turned out that the new unit needed a larger diameter pipe for the distance it had to pull. Since then WOW!
    Typically our combined heat and electric in the winter and our A/C and electric in the summer are about even. In the most extreme we have had a combined $200 bill heating basement and living level total of 2900 square feet.
    Good luck, stay warm.

    John in Mich    Posted 10-16-2017 at 16:59:53 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [No Email]  
  • Re: MIght be time for a new furnace
  • Forgot to mention, the same guy installed a new furnace and a/c for a small house we owned in Milan. It was 1200 square feet rental unit on a crawl space. Ran into a couple of problems that was not the furnace fault.
    One, a bird had crawled into the exhaust and slid down to the fan. I drilled two small holes in the pipe outside and strung a #14 copper wire across the pipe.
    The second problem was a hole rubbed into the rubber tube to the evac sensor. $.25 hose fixed it.
    Have since sold the house.

    BlasterStumps    Posted 10-16-2017 at 15:34:24 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Re: MIght be time for a new furnace
  • What type is it Dan, hot water or forced air? If it is hot water there are some on-demand units that are fairly reasonable and reliable. Still it might be about 3 to 3500 just for the unit uninstalled

    Farmer Dan    Posted 10-16-2017 at 16:28:09 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Time for a new furnace
  • Just worked out the details on the order. Set me back 4 grand, natural gas, forced air, dual stage and a really nice air filtration system that I demanded because of my lungs. Also 10years free parts and labor and 45 min response time. Good company with an excellent reputation locally. They did the heat in my shop too. Waiting for them to call back and setup the install date. Feel sorry for the guys that have to cut up that old furnace and drag its carcass out of the basement.

    Dave Smith    Posted 10-16-2017 at 12:37:28 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Re: MIght be time for a new furnace
  • If you think you can get 50 plus years out of a new furnace, you are dreaming. You
    will be very fortunate to get 25 months. The new furnaces may burn more efficiently
    but are way, way more expensive to maintain.
    Dave <*)))><

    Farmer Dan    Posted 10-16-2017 at 13:56:39 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Re: MIght be time for a new furnace
  • Can not get 50 years out of much anything anymore. But if a new furnace fails I have a warranty and parts are available thats a plus and they are cheaper to run. This monster has a 6 amp 110 volt ac motor for the blower LOL. Might as well get the new one now before the weather turns or this one goes out completely.

    Dave Smith    Posted 10-16-2017 at 15:34:27 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Re: MIght be time for a new furnace
  • I understand how you need a new furnace. But do not expect miracles from it.
    I would advise you to look over the controls and understand what they do.
    They follow Murphys rule and STB on a Saturday evening at 10pm.
    Our newer furnaces here can be a real PIA.
    First after the thermostat calls for heat.
    It starts the exhaust fan. You can not buy just the motor. It comes as a package only with the fan attached. (about $200 on amazon .com) On one of our furnaces the wire
    the motor to he electric circuit broke. A wire as fine as a piece of hair. I was able to resolder it to the plug and got it working.
    When a sensor picks up a negative pressure in the fire chamber, It starts a heater
    element glowing. When another sensor sees the heater is hot enough, it turns on the
    gas. There is also a sensor outside of the fire chamber that watches to see if a
    flame escapes from the fire chamber. If it detects anything it shuts down the whole
    system. A sensor above the heat chamber controls the fan blowing the warm air to the house. There is also a over temp sensor to shut the system down up there.

    When I was laid up medically, the heater element burned out and the furnace would not come on.
    Head Honcho had a repair man come in ( I worked for the man that started that
    business in 1955. He would not have ripped people off like the young guy that has the business now) He charged $80 for the house call. I was ok with that. But he charged $135 for the part I cold get local or off amazon for $30
    I hope this will help you understand how these new furnaces work.
    Dave <*)))><

    Dave Smith    Posted 10-16-2017 at 15:51:25 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • another weak pont
  • Another weak point is the new thermostats. If you now have a old Honeywell thermostat with a mercury switch. DO not get rid of it. They work and modern technology has not
    come up with something it's equal.
    Dave <*)))><

    Farmer Dan    Posted 10-16-2017 at 16:30:44 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Re: another weak pont
  • I have an old school round honeywell on the wall right now and two still new in the box. I love them. Set it at 70 degrees and Fan/auto and your done, easy and very accurate.

    Charles (N.C.)    Posted 10-16-2017 at 11:31:52 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [No Email]  
  • Re: MIght be time for a new furnace
  • Some things can be put off till another day but water and heat isn't one of them.Furnace goes dead and then the "process" starts,,,evaluation of needs,models,cost,ordering and installation timmmmmmmmme ! Golly,,,it's cold.Hope the water lines don't burst etc.Get er done Dan.

    Island Mike    Posted 10-16-2017 at 11:22:39 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [Email]  
  • Re: MIght be time for a new furnace
  • Do lots of research before you buy. Some of the new units may not be very well built.
    Shirley had a new one installed, and it failed about 18 months later.

    Island Mike

    AL CT    Posted 10-16-2017 at 11:21:30 [URL] [DELETE]        [Reply] [No Email]  
  • Re: MIght be time for a new furnace
  • Whenever an older furnace starts to act up, it can only get worst. If you're serious, replace it before it totally fails. Especially before the winter snows and bad weather arrives.

    [Back] [Return to Top of Forum]