As a more informed homeowner, you know the importance of properly maintaining your home’s heating and cooling systems. This includes the thermostat. While modern thermostats are designed to last for many years, there may come a time when you might need to replace a failing thermostat or upgrade to a smart thermostat. As outlined below, several signs may indicate it’s time for an upgrade.

1. Higher Energy Bills

The thermostat is the brain of your heating and cooling system, telling it when to turn on and off. This sensitive instrument can suffer from age-related issues, making it more unreliable. As a result, it could be heating or cooling your home more than desired. When you notice an increase in energy costs, it’s time to have your system checked.

2. Inconsistent Temperature Readings

When a thermostat is nearing the end of its lifespan, it may start to provide inaccurate temperature readings. This can lead to your heating or cooling system running longer or shorter than necessary. You might notice that the feel of the room does not match the reading on the thermostat. Most newer models will be much more accurate and reliable when compared to older ones.

3. Age

The average lifespan of a thermostat is ten years. However, this can vary depending on the model. After that time frame, even though the rest of the system is functional, your thermostat may lose its accuracy and reliability due to age-related issues.

Even if your thermostat functions, it may still be time for an upgrade. Newer models will offer more advanced features like touch-screen displays, digital readouts, and adjustable set-points. These provide greater precision in controlling your home’s climate comfort level.

Further, many newer models are Wi-Fi enabled, allowing you to control it remotely through your computer, smartphone, or another mobile device. Smart thermostats come with energy-saving settings and programmable options that will help save money on utility bills. A smart thermostat can be set to raise or lower the temperature when no one is home or everyone is asleep.

But even smart thermostats are susceptible to aging. A failing smart thermostat may forget its settings. Once set, you shouldn’t have to continually reset your smart thermostat. If you run into this problem, you’ll probably need a replacement.

4. System Not Turning On or Off

If your heating or cooling system doesn’t turn on, you might think you’ll have to replace the whole thing. Luckily that might not be the case. A faulty thermostat or wiring could be the culprit. You won’t know until you have an HVAC specialist inspect your system.

Sometimes, your heating or cooling system won’t shut off. In this case, you can try manually turning the system off at the thermostat. If that doesn’t work, there is a fault in the wiring or calibration, and you’ll likely need a replacement.

5. Short Cycling

Short cycling is a term used to describe when your heating system turns on and off repeatedly or too frequently. This can be due to a faulty thermostat, which may not accurately measure your home’s temperature. Short cycling is not only annoying, but it can also lead to higher energy bills since the system will be running for longer than necessary.

A worn-out motor, fan, or blower may also cause this problem. However, if the thermostat is to blame, it’s time to invest in a newer, more accurate, and reliable model.

To avoid this issue in the future, ensure to get your thermostat checked regularly by a professional technician and replace it at the first signs of trouble. That way, you can always get the most efficient performance from your HVAC system.

6. Visible Signs of Damage

Like any other home appliance, a thermostat can eventually suffer from wear and tear due to years of use. Over time, the wiring may become corroded or frayed, and the device may look dilapidated. If it’s in a busy hallway, it’s also susceptible to bumps and jostling. If you can visibly see any signs of damage, such as discoloration, rust, or cracks, your thermostat likely needs replacing.

It’s always better to be safe than sorry about your home’s climate control system. Don’t wait too long before replacing an old thermostat since this could lead to further damage, such as an HVAC system breakdown or a fire. In addition, it could also affect the health of those living in the home due to a lack of proper temperature regulation.

7. Dark or Non-Responsiveness Thermostat

If the face of your thermostat is dark, you’ll want to call for service as soon as possible. This is usually due to a faulty wiring connection or an internal issue. In the latter case, you’ll probably need a new thermostat.

You may also notice that the panel is simply not as responsive as it used to be. When you change the settings, the system should respond almost immediately. When there’s a problem, you might have to press or tap repeatedly to get your desired result. Or there may be delays in response. It might be tempting to overlook these signs as an inconvenience. But delaying service could lead to a system failure. Failure on a frigid weekend is never convenient.

8. An Analog Thermostat

With the advancement of technology, modern thermostats have become more efficient and user-friendly. If you’re still using an analog thermostat, it’s almost certainly time for an upgrade. An analog thermostat doesn’t offer the same level of accuracy and control as a digital one.

Maintaining an even room temperature with an analog thermostat may be difficult since its settings are limited. As such, the cost of your energy bills can be higher than necessary due to inefficient performance. Alternatively, you might notice you’re uncomfortable and forever fiddling with the settings, trying to get it just right.

Investing in a new digital model is a much smarter choice. These devices provide greater control over your home’s climate while helping you save money on energy costs in the long run. So for better accuracy, cost savings, and convenience, among other benefits, replacing your old thermostat with a newer model is a great idea.

Call in the Professionals

Replacing your thermostat is important to keep your HVAC system running efficiently and provide a comfortable home environment. By paying attention to the signs mentioned above, you can easily detect when it’s time for a replacement and invest in a newer model that will provide better performance and cost savings in the long run. So don’t wait too long before getting your thermostat checked by a professional. This can ensure that your home will stay cool or warm depending on the season without any unnecessary hassles.

At Bel-Aire Heating & Cooling, we provide various HVAC services for Michigan residents and the surrounding areas. We are your go-to company if you need maintenance, repair, or installation of any heating or cooling equipment, including thermostats, boilers, and mini splits. We also offer air quality and geothermal service. We work with residential and commercial clients. Call us today to learn how we can help you stay warm and keep your cool.

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