Being thrifty by hanging onto aging appliances can sometimes backfire on you, especially when those appliances pose a danger to yourself and/or your home. Some may even drive up energy costs significantly, which defeats the purpose of hanging onto them. You might want to think twice about these three major home appliances before limping them along well past their prime.
An aging HVAC system will cost you every time it runs. Not only does it reduce your comfort, but it also drives up your energy bills. There’s also the uncertainty of it breaking down when you most need it. Furnaces and air conditioners that are nearing the end of their useful lives often fail when the heating or cooling loads are highest. Unfortunately, it’s also a time when you need them the most.
Replacing the system before it fails completely will assure you that you won’t have to suffer without heating or cooling for any length of time. You’ll have time to make informed decisions about the brand you want and its energy efficiency. HVAC installation also involves home preparation by the contractor.
Once in place, the new HVAC system will cut your energy bills significantly and could make your indoor air healthier to breathe. A lot of air goes through HVAC systems and years of dust might have collected inside it and the ducts. A new system will be clean and have effective air filtration.
Hanging onto an aging water heater could be the recipe for major damage to your home. If you notice rust on the tank or water leaks, it’s better to have a new water heater installed immediately. There are few components of a water heater that are fixable. There’s nothing you can do about a disintegrating tank. Should it rupture, you could have a massive flood inside your home since the water will continue to run to the tank until you shut it off. Water damage can be costly to fix, especially if your insurance doesn’t cover it.
An aging refrigerator might not cause a catastrophic flood or leave you intolerably uncomfortable, but it could leave you without much to eat if it fails overnight or when you’re away. Besides losing all that food, you could wait days for the delivery and installation of a new refrigerator.
Being prudent by hanging onto aging appliances can be counterproductive, especially the water heater. Unlike a refrigerator or HVAC system, there’s not much you can do to extend its useful life once it starts to show signs of failing.