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The A/C Guy of Tampa Bay Inc. Blog

How Long Can You Expect Your Heater to Last?


You don’t want to replace a valuable central heating system in your home until you’ve gotten all the possible useful years of service out of it that you can. That’s just the basic logic of any important appliance. But how long will that heater in your house last? When can you expect to call us to schedule a heating replacement?

There is no one answer we can give you, because not only do different heaters have different life expectancies, but other factors such as use and maintenance come into play. We can make several generalizations that may help you if you’re currently on the fence about the future of your heating in Tampa, FL.

The Life Expectancies of Different Types of Heaters

Most homes in the area rely on one of three different kinds of central heating systems: gas furnaces, electric furnaces, heat pumps (both ducted and ductless). They have different lifespan averages:

  • Gas Furnace: A gas furnace can usually last from 15 to 20 years.
  • Electric Furnace: Usually an electric furnace will outlast a gas furnace, getting to 20 years or more.
  • Heat Pump: A heat pump is expected to last between 10 to 15 years.

If you still have the documentation for your heating system, you’ll find a manufacturer’s estimated service life in it. Or you can look up the model online. The key year for most heating systems is 15, which is often the end for heat pumps and marks the “caution” period for gas and electric furnaces.

The Florida Weather Factor

You might have already started to wonder if the amount you use your heating system will affect its longevity. After all, you live in a warm climate where heaters don’t need to put in anywhere near the amount of work as in more northern areas. Yes, this can make a difference: if a furnace isn’t running most daytime hours through every day of winter, it won’t accumulate as much wear and tear. The best we can say about this is that heating systems in Florida will usually reach the upper end of their life expectancy. Provided they’re treated well. Which brings us to… 

The Maintenance Factor

All the estimates above are based on heating systems that receive regular annual maintenance from HVAC professionals. With no or irregular maintenance, the life expectancy of any system will drop. In fact, it could be cut in half because of missed inspections and tune-ups. If your heater hasn’t gotten routine care like this, lower the expectancy by a few years. (And don’t forget to sign up for regular maintenance in the future.)

We’re Here to Help

If you aren’t sure about whether it’s time to replace an older heater, the best course of action is to call our professionals. We can inspect the system, look over your history of repairs and heating bills, and talk about your price options for a potential replacement. You can trust that we’ll be honest with you regarding your heating system—we’ll see that you receive the work you need.

The A/C Guy of Tampa Bay Inc. serves our Tampa Bay family with integrity and honor. Call us when you think you need a heating system replacement.

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