5 Things You Need to Make the Best Furnace Purchase.
October 8, 2014
As the world moves toward more on line purchase decisions, it should come as no shock to find that furnaces are no exception. People naturally are looking to get the best deal, but most people realize that if it doesn’t cost as much, there’s probably a reason for it. Since few people actually enjoy the furnace research process, we thought we’d provide some input.
Buy to last. The average length of stay in a home is 7 years and climbing. Even if you plan on staying double that amount of time, you really only need to make the furnace purchase decision once. No furnace can be sold cheaply enough to cover the cost of early replacement. So – buy a brand that will last from a company that will be around to keep it working. It doesn’t take much time to find out how long a company has been in business!
Be kind to your furnace and have it serviced at least every couple of years. I’m not saying that you need to buy a service plan, I’m just saying that you need to have a qualified professional tune it up every 24 months or so. As a rule of thumb, most furnaces operate the same way, so this is one area (tune-ups) where cheaper is better. Shop around and find out who has the lowest tune up cost. If that happens to be the company that installed the furnace even better!
Buy a brand that has demonstrated reliability. Although most furnaces operate the same way, the difference is in the quality of the parts. Take some time to find out which companies make the most reliable furnaces. Consumer Reports is an excellent (independent) resource for most consumer goods. Since the average service call is around $150, it doesn’t take much to eat up all of the savings you thought you were getting when you bought that unit for $500 less.
Be smart about efficiency. Yes, prices drop off dramatically as the efficiency of the furnace declines, but if you buy right, you’re signing up for 15+ years of operating costs with the unit. Over 15 years a couple of points of efficiency can add up to a lot of money – particularly with rising energy prices.
Protect yourself with extended warranty. Almost all furnaces come with a 10 year parts warranty but the labour part of repairs can still add up to quite a bit. Insulate yourself from those costs and ask your salesperson about 10 year parts AND LABOUR warranty. It should be less than $400 and is excellent value when spread out over 10 years.
If you take care of these items on your purchase, you’ll not only get great value from your furnace, but will also be free from having to do this for a long time! Remember – to get the best value for your furnace, you need long life, not a cheap price!
By Peter Wagner
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