Space heating can really take up a lot of space on your energy bills; it accounts for about 42 percent of a typical home’s annual energy use, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Upgrading to a new unit can help you save energy and money, but how do you know when the time is right? For most heating systems, there are certain telltale signs of trouble. Consider making a change if:

  1. Your heating system is noisy. You could have an undersized duct system or a serious repair issue.
  2. You’re frequently calling the repairman. Wear and tear on aging equipment may continue to cost you more in repair bills.
  3. Some rooms are too hot or cold. This could be a sign of leaky ducts, poorly designed ductwork or system performance issues.
  4. Your home has humidity problems or excessive dust. Poor equipment operation or leaky ductwork can increase humidity levels inside your home.
  5. Your heating system is 10 years old or older. Upgrade to an ENERGY STAR® qualified model. If installed correctly, these high-efficiency units can reduce your heating costs by up to 20 percent. Consumers Energy offers rebates from $200 to $1,000 on a natural gas furnace or boiler. Available rebates. Choose from a list of participating contractors.

By combining your heating system upgrade with smart conservation strategies, you can save money and stay comfortable all winter long. Learn how you can manage your energy use at