How Do I Know If My Furnace Blower Motor Is Bad?

The chilly winter months require a reliable furnace to provide nice, even heating across your home. Blower motors are important parts of your furnace, but how can you know if it’s going bad, or if it’s working properly?

Read the latest blog post from Novak Heating and Cooling to learn more about blower motors and how to know if one is going bad.

What Does a Blower Motor Do?

The blower motor plays a pivotal role in distributing heated air from your furnace to various rooms in your house through the ductwork.

It essentially powers the fan that pushes air through the system, ensuring consistent and efficient heating. Without a properly functioning blower motor, your furnace won’t be able to deliver warmth effectively. This can lead to comfort issues, higher heating bills, overheating, and a variety of other possible problems.

How to Know if Your Blower Motor is Going Out

There are several indicators that your blower motor may be failing:

  1. Weak Airflow: If you notice a significant decrease in airflow, or a complete lack of air coming from your vents, it could be due to a failing blower motor.
  2. Unusual Sounds: Unusual noises such as grinding, squealing, or rattling coming from your furnace may signal a problem with the blower motor.
  3. Inconsistent Heating: Rooms in your home may not reach the desired temperature or there may be uneven heating, indicating an issue with the blower motor’s ability to distribute warm air effectively.
  4. Frequent Cycling: If your furnace is turning on and off more frequently than usual, it could be struggling due to a faulty blower motor.

While all of these issues can be the first signs of a blower motor going out, they can also be caused by other issues. Have a professional come inspect your unit to pinpoint the exact issue and provide you with the proper solution.

What to Do About a Bad Blower Motor

If you suspect that your blower motor is failing, having it addressed as quickly as possible is important to avoid further damage to your furnace and ensure your comfort. Your furnace depends on its blower motor to keep your home warm, so addressing any issues as soon as possible can restore comfort and safety to your home.

Here’s what you can do about a bad furnace blower motor:

  1. Schedule a Professional Inspection: Contact a qualified HVAC technician, like the ones at Novak Heating and Cooling, to inspect your furnace and diagnose the problem accurately.
  2. Repair or Replace: Depending on the severity of the issue, your technician will recommend either repairing the blower motor or replacing it with a new one.
  3. Regular Maintenance: To prevent future problems, schedule regular maintenance for your furnace, including inspections of the blower motor and other components.

Choose Novak for Furnace Services Throughout the Cedar Rapids Area

When it comes to reliable furnace services in the Cedar Rapids area, choose Novak. Our team of experienced technicians is dedicated to providing top-notch HVAC system solutions, including blower motor repair and replacement. We prioritize customer satisfaction and strive to keep your home comfortable year-round.

Contact us today for all your furnace service needs.

How Much Does it Cost to Replace a Furnace Heat Exchanger?

An important part of your home’s heating system, heat exchangers help your home stay at comfortable temperatures on even the chilliest winter nights. But if your furnace’s heat exchanger suddenly stops working, you’ll likely need to replace it in order to restore comfort to your home. 

So how much does it cost to replace a bad or cracked heat exchanger? Keep reading the latest blog post from Novak Heating and Cooling to learn more.

What Are Heat Exchangers?

Heat exchangers are responsible for transferring heat from one fluid to another. In a typical furnace, the heat exchanger absorbs heat generated by burning fuel and then transfers it to the air that is distributed throughout the house via ductwork.

This process is essential for maintaining a comfortable indoor temperature during colder months. Without a reliable heat exchanger in place, your furnace wouldn’t be able to efficiently heat your home, causing uncomfortable and potentially even unsafe days and nights.

How Long Do Heat Exchangers Last?

The lifespan of a heat exchanger can vary depending on several factors, including the quality of the unit, how well it’s maintained, and the frequency of use. On average, a well-maintained heat exchanger can last anywhere from 10 to 20 years. However, factors such as corrosion, thermal stress, and improper installation can significantly reduce its lifespan.

To improve the lifespan of your furnace’s heat exchanger, be sure to schedule regular furnace maintenance. By investing in routine maintenance and addressing any issues promptly, you can maximize the lifespan of your furnace’s heat exchanger and ensure efficient heating performance for years to come.

The Cost to Replace a Heat Exchanger

How much it costs to replace a bad heat exchanger can vary depending on factors like the make and model of your furnace, the availability of replacement parts, and the complexity of the installation process. Additionally, labor costs in your area and the level of experience of the HVAC technician performing the replacement can impact the overall cost.

As a general estimate, the heat exchanger replacement cost can range from $500 to $2,000. While this can seem like an expensive investment, it’s important to remember that a well-functioning heat exchanger is essential for the safety and efficiency of your heating system. For an exact estimate, be sure to contact a qualified furnace service company.

If you reside within the Cedar Rapids, IA area, the experts at Novak Heating and Cooling would be happy to serve you.

Novak Can Help; Schedule Services in Cedar Rapids, IA

Whether your home uses an electric or gas furnace, all furnaces contain a heat exchanger that works to provide your home with even, reliable heating.

If you’re in need of furnace services in Cedar Rapids, IA, including heat exchanger solutions, Novak is here to help. Our team of experienced HVAC technicians can assess your furnace’s condition, provide expert recommendations, and perform timely repairs or replacements to ensure your home stays warm and comfortable.

Contact us today to schedule an appointment and experience reliable heating services you can trust.

What Size Furnace Do I Need?

Choosing the right size furnace for your home isn’t just about comfort; it’s about efficiency, cost, and longevity. Oversized heaters or undersized furnaces can lead to a range of issues, from increased energy bills to inadequate heating. At Novak Heating and Cooling, we understand the importance of making an informed decision, and we’re here to guide you through the process.

If you’re in the market for a new heater and find yourself wondering, “What size furnace do I need?”, keep reading to find out the answer. Then, when you’re ready, reach out to Novak Heating and Cooling for expert service and furnace installation!

Understanding Furnace Size and Its Importance

When it comes to heating your home, one of the most critical decisions you’ll make is selecting the right size furnace. The size of a furnace is typically measured in British Thermal Units (BTUs), which indicates the amount of heat it can produce per hour. Understanding British Thermal Units and choosing the appropriate size is crucial for several reasons, chief among them being efficiency and effectiveness in heating your home.

Why Furnace Size Matters

  • Efficient Heating: A correctly sized gas furnace operates in cycles, avoiding the pitfalls of short-cycling (frequent on and off) which occurs in oversized furnaces. This efficient operation not only maintains a consistent temperature in your home but also reduces wear and tear on the components, extending your furnace’s lifespan.
  • Energy Cost Savings: An appropriately sized furnace uses energy more effectively. An oversized furnace, while it may heat the house quickly, results in higher energy bills. Conversely, an undersized furnace has to work harder and longer to reach the desired temperature, also leading to increased energy use.
  • Comfortable Indoor Environment: The primary purpose of a furnace is to keep your home comfortable during colder months. A furnace that’s the right size for your home can maintain a consistent and even temperature, eliminating cold spots and uneven heating, which are common issues with incorrectly sized furnaces.

The Impact of BTUs

The number of BTUs required to heat a home effectively varies based on several factors, including the home’s square footage, the climate, and the home’s insulation. As a general rule, a typical home requires between 30 to 60 BTUs per square foot. However, this is a guideline, not a one-size-fits-all solution. For example, a home in a colder climate would need more BTUs per square foot than one in a milder climate.

While the BTU rating is a measure of a furnace’s capacity to produce heat, it’s also essential to consider the furnace’s efficiency. Furnaces come with an Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) rating, which indicates how well they convert energy into heat. A higher AFUE rating means more furnace efficiency, which can compensate for the high BTU requirements in colder climates.

At Novak Heating and Cooling, we specialize in helping homeowners find this balance, ensuring your home is warm, your energy bills are reasonable, and your furnace lasts for years to come.

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Furnace Size

Many homeowners wonder, “What size furnace do I need?” The reality is, several factors influence the ideal furnace size for your home:

  • Home Size and Layout: The square footage of your home is the starting point. Larger homes require more heating, but the layout, including ceiling height and room configuration, also plays a part.
  • Climate and Location: Homes in colder climates demand higher BTU furnaces. Novak Heating and Cooling, with our deep understanding of local weather patterns and your climate zone heating factor, can help determine the right size based on your location.
  • Insulation Quality: Good insulation means better heat retention, reducing the furnace’s workload. We assess insulation levels to recommend a furnace that complements your home’s insulation.
  • Windows and Doors: The quantity and quality of windows and doors affect heat loss. We consider these factors to ensure your furnace isn’t overburdened.
  • Personal Heating Preferences: Everyone’s comfort level is different. We listen to your preferences to find a furnace that meets your personal comfort needs.

Calculating the right furnace size involves complex formulas and considerations. At Novak Heating and Cooling, we use our expertise and advanced tools, including a furnace size calculator, to accurately determine the perfect furnace size for your home. This calculation considers all the factors mentioned above to ensure a customized solution.

Novak’s Furnace Services

If you’re planning to install a furnace in a new build or looking to replace an existing unit, Novak Heating and Cooling is your go-to HVAC service provider in Eastern Iowa. Serving the Cedar Rapids, IA, area for nearly 90 years, every single HVAC professional we have on staff possesses extensive knowledge about these systems and offers a wide range of furnace services to meet all your heating needs.

Professional Assessment and Installation

The key to perfect furnace sizing is a professional assessment. Novak Heating and Cooling’s team of experts conducts thorough evaluations of your home to recommend the ideal furnace size. Our installation process is meticulous, guaranteeing your new gas furnaces operate at peak efficiency from day one. 

Reliable Repairs to Reduce Costly Breakdowns

Our commitment to your home’s heating doesn’t end at installation. Novak Heating and Cooling provides top-notch furnace repair services for all brands and models. Our technicians are trained to diagnose and fix any issue, ensuring your new furnace runs smoothly throughout its lifespan. From emergency repairs to routine appointments, we’re here to make sure your furnace remains a reliable source of warmth for your home.

Maintenance and Upkeep for Optimal Performance

A well-maintained furnace has more energy efficiency and lasts longer. Regular maintenance checks, which we offer, can identify and fix small issues before they become big problems. Our comprehensive service plans cover everything from routine inspections to filter changes, ensuring your furnace remains in top condition.

Upgrade to a more Efficient Furnace Today

Ready to find the perfect furnace for your home? Contact Novak Heating and Cooling today for a professional consultation. We’d love to tell you more about how we can help keep your home comfortable year-round with the right-size furnace for your space.

How Efficient Are New Furnaces?

In an era where winters are becoming more severe and energy costs continue to rise, the efficiency of your home heating system has never been more important. Thanks to modern advancements in furnace technology, efficiency levels have seen significant improvements, making it an opportune moment to assess your home’s heating system.

Serving Cedar Rapids, Iowa, since 1934, Novak Heating and Cooling is dedicated to helping you navigate the complexities of new furnace efficiency, ensuring your home remains warm and your heating system is as cost-effective as possible.

How to Measure Your Furnace Efficiency

Measuring the efficiency of your furnace is key to understanding how well it’s performing and can also help in making informed decisions about maintenance, upgrades, or replacements. Here’s how you can measure the efficiency of your existing heating system:

Understand AFUE Ratings

The most common measure of furnace efficiency is the Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) rating. It represents the percentage of fuel converted into heat in a year relative to the amount of fuel supplied to the furnace. For example, a natural gas furnace with an AFUE of 90% means that 90% of the fuel is converted into heat, while the remaining 10% is lost in the combustion process or exhaust. The easiest way to find out the efficiency of your furnace is by checking its manual or the information sticker on the unit. This usually lists the AFUE rating.

Inspect Your Energy Bills

Compare your current energy bills with those from previous years, taking note of any significant changes in cost. While this won’t give you a precise AFUE rating, significant increases in your bills could indicate decreased energy efficiency.

Professional Energy Audit

For a more accurate assessment, consider a professional energy audit. HVAC professionals can conduct thorough inspections and tests, including a combustion efficiency test, to determine your furnace’s energy efficiency. This test, performed by HVAC technicians, measures the combustion gases produced by the furnace. By analyzing the content of these gases, they can determine how efficiently your furnace is burning fuel.

Usage Patterns and Maintenance History

Consider how often the furnace runs and its maintenance history. Well-maintained heating equipment is likely to be more efficient. Frequent cycling or a history of neglected maintenance can decrease efficiency as components such as the heat exchanger may wear down more quickly.

Age of the Furnace

Older furnaces generally have lower efficiency. If your furnace is over 15-20 years old, it’s likely less efficient compared to newer models, regardless of the AFUE rating at the time of purchase.

Why Furnace Efficiency Matters

Furnace efficiency is a crucial aspect of your home heating system, impacting not only your comfort but also your expenses and environmental footprint. Here’s a closer look at why it’s so important:

  • Reduced Energy Bills: High-efficiency gas furnaces with a superior AFUE rating are more effective at converting fuel to heat. This means you get more warmth from each unit of energy, leading to significant savings on utility costs, especially during the cold winter months. The long-term savings from reduced energy consumption can offset the initial investment in a high-efficiency furnace, making it a financially savvy choice over time.
  • Environmental Impact: High-efficiency furnaces use less fuel, which is key in conserving natural resources, whether it’s gas, oil, or electricity. By reducing fuel consumption, these furnaces emit fewer greenhouse gases, thereby lowering your home’s carbon footprint.
  • Consistent Comfort: A high-efficiency heating system is better at providing even and reliable heating, which means a more comfortable indoor environment free from cold spots or drastic temperature variations. 

Advancements in Furnace Technology

Recent years have witnessed impressive advancements in new furnace technology, leading to significant enhancements in their efficiency. These innovations have not only made electric furnace and natural gas furnace models more energy-efficient but also improved their overall performance and user control.

Variable Speed Blowers

Unlike traditional blowers that operate at one or two speeds, variable-speed blowers can adjust airflow speeds more precisely. This adaptability ensures a more consistent distribution of heat throughout your home, eliminating hot and cold spots. They consume less energy by operating at the exact speed necessary to maintain the desired temperature, rather than full power at all times. Variable speed airflow results in quieter operation, prolonged lifespan of the blower, and reduced electricity consumption.

Fully Modulating Gas Valve

Modulating gas valves represents a significant step forward in furnace technology. These valves can adjust the rate at which fuel is burned, effectively improving your furnace’s efficiency. By fine-tuning the amount of fuel used, these valves ensure that the furnace provides exactly the amount of heat needed, reducing wasted energy. This results in a consistent indoor temperature and higher overall furnace efficiency.

Smart Thermostat Compatibility

Modern furnaces are often compatible with smart thermostats, allowing for enhanced control over heating and energy savings. This compatibility enables homeowners to adjust the temperature remotely, set schedules, and monitor energy usage patterns. Smart thermostats can learn your preferences and habits over time, automatically adjusting the heating schedule for maximum efficiency and comfort. They can also provide insights into your heating system’s performance and notify you about necessary maintenance or efficiency issues.

Novak Heating and Cooling: Your Partner in Efficient Heating

At Novak Heating and Cooling, our goal is to help you strike an ideal balance between furnace efficiency, comfort, and cost-effectiveness. We recognize the vital role a furnace plays in your home, and we’re committed to guiding you to the best high-efficiency unit available.

As a Carrier® factory authorized dealer and a proud recipient of the Carrier® President’s Award, we bring unmatched expertise to each furnace installation or furnace replacement, catering to both residential properties and new construction projects. Our team is equipped to assist you in selecting an energy-efficient furnace that perfectly fits your home’s needs. Once you’ve made your choice, you can rely on our skilled heating contractor for a seamless furnace installation and removal of your old standard efficiency furnace.

But our relationship with your furnace doesn’t end post-installation. We’re here to support you throughout the lifespan of your heating systems with expert repair and maintenance services. To keep your furnace running at peak efficiency, we recommend joining our Worry-Free Maintenance Program. This comprehensive HVAC system maintenance plan includes seasonal tune-ups, priority service, and reduced rates for your heating and cooling system, from a natural gas furnace to a heat pump. Regular maintenance is crucial not only for sustaining efficiency but also for avoiding unexpected breakdowns and extending the life of your heater or air conditioning unit.

Are you ready to improve your home’s heating efficiency? Reach out to Novak Heating and Cooling today to explore your heating options.