4 things to consider when upgrading your furnace

If you are thinking about replacing your furnace, there are several important factors to consider. It’s good to be proactive in making your decision on a furnace replacement a little bit before it’s actually time to replace it, instead of buying a furnace in a panicked situation when it’s broken and you’re out of heat in the coldest days of winter. Here are some of the primary factors to consider when making the choice to upgrade your furnace.

#1: Consider how old your furnace is.
If your furnace is 16 – 20 years old, it’s likely time to replace it. This is the average lifespan of most furnaces made today, so even if your furnace is a year or two away from that mark, it’s good to start researching your options so you know what you need to plan for when the time comes.

#2: Factor in how much it will cost to maintain it.
When your furnace reaches a certain age, there will likely be parts that start failing that need repair and replacement. Once parts begin to fail, you will be paying for service calls and labor, on top of the part that needs to be repaired. This will add up over time, so you will need to factor in how much this will cost over the long haul. If it comes to a significant percentage of what the new furnace will cost, making the switch to a full furnace replacement will be a better and more financially sound decision.

#3: Understand its energy efficiency.
Older furnace models simply are not as energy efficient as newer ones. That means that you will be wasting energy and paying more on your utility bill, the longer you have the furnace. High efficiency furnaces can pay off significantly when it comes to energy savings over time.

#4: Recognize furnace safety.
If your furnace is decades old, it can be more prone to breakdown which could result in sparks, flames, or carbon monoxide leakage. Don’t risk your family’s safety by continuing to use a furnace that is old and prone to potential danger.

Not sure where to start when it comes to furnace replacement? Unsure of which system is right for your home? We carry a variety of gas furnaces, ductless heat pumps, and more! Our team of experienced HVAC professionals will come out and look at the area and offer suggestions on which one will work with your home’s layout as well as your budget. Call us today for an appointment!

SHC Cares Stuffed Animal Drive

In 2018, we launched our new #SHCCares campaign, which is a community outreach campaign that encourages employees and customers to give back to the area we live in and serve. Our employees are given opportunities to volunteer or give in certain ways and our most recent initiative was the “Stuffed Animal Drive” that benefited children undergoing treatment or care at OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital.

This year, we were able to collect 305 stuffed animals for kids at OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital! We accomplished this by receiving donations of stuffed animals and monetary donations from our customers that we matched dollar-for-dollar.  We want to say THANK YOU to everyone who was involved in making this stuffed animal drive a success. We know that the stuffed animals will bring smiles and comfort to many children that are facing a difficult time in the hospital as they are away from home.

“We originally had a goal of 100 stuffed animals and after the first week knew we would surpass that goal and just decided to get as many as we could.  It was wonderful to see the SHC team members getting involved, donations from our clients and other community partners.  We really appreciate all the donations and taking them up to Doernbecher’s was an amazing experience.”

Check out the final result in our video:

It’s important for us to be an active part of the local community and giving back is one way we show our support and love for our community and customers.  To learn more about our SHCCares program, visit our website here.

Benefits of a Heat Pump

Fall weather has arrived and that calls for some chilly mornings and more and more people in Oregon are using their heating system to stay warm now! Is your heating system up to the task? Or maybe it’s time to think about getting a new system in place for the upcoming fall and winter months of bitterly cold days. A heat pump is a great solution. Here’s how a heat pump can help you stay warm this season.

What’s a heat pump?
A ducted heat pump uses an outdoor unit that pulls heat from outside air and moves it inside. Even thought it might seem unlikely, when the temperature is cold, there is still heat in the air! The fans deliver warm air through your ducts and your home will stay warm and comfortable. If the weather is warm outside, it unit will also provide air conditioning – pulling the cool air inside during the hot summer days. One unit can provide year-round comfort with the use of your existing duct work!   A heat pump works in conjunction with your gas or electric furnace as back up heat.

What are the benefits of a heat pump?
There are many benefits to installing a heat pump in your home.

  • Continual comfort: no matter what the weather is doing outside, a heat pump will provide year-round heating or cooling
  • Noise reduction: heat pumps are very quiet, and you can hardly tell they’re running
  • Better indoor air quality: heat pumps will filter the air, making it cleaner and better to breathe
  • Energy savings: heat pumps are incredibly energy efficient and can save users significantly on heating and cooling bills when compared to standard electric furnaces
  • Environmentally friendly: heat pumps use less fossil fuels and they will lower carbon dioxide emissions

A ducted heat pump offers comfort with a simple touch of a button. Not sure if a heat pump system is right for you? We can help! Our knowledgeable team at Specialty Heating & Cooling can provide options on which heat pump is right for your budget and your home. Contact us today for more information so we can share your options and let you know about what financing and incentives are available.

Should You Repair or Replace Your Furnace?

Fall weather is here and that means the temperatures are dropping a bit and you may be turning on your furnace more often. But, if your system is older or having problems in any way, you may be wondering if it needs a simple repair or if a full replacement is in order.

When is repair best?
In most cases, furnace problems can be diagnosed quickly and repaired by our team of experienced, licensed HVAC technicians. If your furnace is less than 10 years old, chances are, things can be fixed through repair. When it comes to repairs, if the cost of the repair is less than a third of what it would cost to replace the furnace and if it’s in its first half or less of its lifetime, repair is usually a good option.

How many repairs has it had?
Trying to keep your old heating system alive with continual repairs? Repairs can be expensive and if it’s still unreliable and your energy bills are steadily increasing, it’s likely that you should consider doing a full furnace system replacement sooner rather than later. Repairs could end up being a waste of your hard-earned money, especially if your furnace is more than 15 years old. A new furnace can pay for itself because you won’t need to repair it all the time and your energy bill will remain low and that means for the next 15 to 20 years, you can rely on it.

Benefits of a replacement furnace:
New furnace systems are very energy efficient and can save you hundreds of dollars each cold fall and winter season. In addition, it will clean and effectively filter the air, which will improve the indoor air quality inside your home, making the air healthier and cleaner to breathe. Old furnaces simply don’t have the option to filter the air well, which means that pollutants are making their way inside your home and into the air you and your family breathes. Filtered air can also help reduce asthma and allergy symptoms!

Our experienced HVAC professionals at Specialty Heating & Cooling understand the importance of having a reliable working furnace set up for the fall and winter. We are happy to work with you to find the right system for your budget and we can even help you save money with current rebates and other promotions. Contact us today for options!