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Heating FAQs

Our Pros Answer Your Most Common Home Heating FAQs

At Martens Plumbing & Heating, we love helping our customers troubleshoot their furnaces and boilers and sharing energy-efficiency tips whenever we can. So, we’re answering some of your top home heating FAQs to give you a little more insight into your home comfort. Read through them below and call 262-363-7146 for more tips and tricks.

In general, furnaces last anywhere from 15 to 20 years. This can depend on how well you have it maintained as well as how rough the winters have been on it.

Here are a few signs you can watch (and listen) for that will tell you if your furnace or boiler needs replacing:

  • Strange rattling, clanking, or scraping noises that come from your system
  • Unexplained rise in your energy bills
  • Less heating comfort than usual
  • Overly dusty, dry, or humid indoor air
  • The system is nearing the end of its average lifespan

If it is time for a replacement, know that Martens Plumbing will help you find the best heating system for your home.

Yes! Maintenance is the only way to keep your furnace (and air conditioner) running at peak performance throughout the year. It can also help extend your system’s lifespan, reduce energy bills, and improve your overall comfort.

A heat pump is an alternative way to both heat and cool your home. Instead of creating warm air like a furnace, heat pumps take natural heat from the air outside your house and transfer it inside. In the warmer months, it reverses operation, taking hot air from inside and releasing it outside.

  • Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE)—ratio comparing how much fuel your furnace uses to create heat. For example, if your system’s rating is 85, it converts 85 percent of its fuel into usable heat. A higher rating indicates a more efficient system.
  • British Thermal Unit (BTU)—represents the amount of heat a boiler, air conditioner, or heat pump uses to raise or lower the temperature of a pound of water by one degree. Unlike other ratings, BTU represents capacity, not efficiency.

If your furnace or boiler breaks down in the middle of winter—no matter the weather or time of day—call our experts right away. We’re available 24/7 at 262-363-7146.

If one of the FAQs above doesn’t make sense to you—or it triggers another question—feel free to ask! We’re available at 262-363-7146 or you can contact us and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.