Guide to Furnace Warranties
When investing a substantial amount of money into a new heating system, Louisville area homeowners want to know they are gaining value. Furnace warranties help homeowners feel confident in the performance of the products they choose and are key considerations when making purchase decisions.
Furnace warranties and their coverage make the difference between a low-cost repair and a significant expense in many situations. Jarboe’s shares with you the types of furnace warranties offered and the information you need to know to set up and use this vital coverage.
Furnace Warranties – Types for Homeowners
Furnace warranties cover different aspects of your heating equipment in the event that a malfunction occurs. Included with the purchase of your new furnace comes a manufacturer warranty. The contractor who installs your new heating system may separately warranty their company’s work. Extended furnace warranties may be offered to stretch the benefits of the original warranty.
Three general types of furnace warranties exist when you purchase a new unit:
Manufacturer Furnace Warranties
HVAC equipment manufacturers warranty their finished products and systems against material and workmanship defects within the furnace itself. The actual terms vary from one manufacturer to the next, including what is covered and the coverage period. It is a limited warranty that provides for the replacement of these items if failure occurs under certain conditions during the warranty term. With this warranty, the manufacturer covers the cost of a replacement component – while some brands offer unit replacement warranties for the failure of specific components, typically furnace warranties don’t cover total system replacement.
The manufacturer warranty may also be called an equipment warranty or parts warranty. It applies to major system components, not items like new furnace filters or blower motor belts. Most brands also offer a special warranty term that covers the heat exchanger of a furnace for a longer period of time than other major system components.
New furnaces are installed by licensed HVAC contractors, not the equipment manufacturer. As such, the manufacturer has no control over the quality of work the contractor does, so the act of installation and the work involved must be warrantied separate from the equipment warranty.
An HVAC contractor can offer customers an installation warranty, also called labor warranty, that covers repairs in the event the new furnace is damaged during installation or if faulty installation service was performed. Many contractors include this coverage with furnace installation jobs, though some offer it separately for an additional fee.
Extended Furnace Warranties
The manufacturer warranty only lasts so long, and after the warranty period has ended, there is no warranty protection for defects. Extended furnace warranties give homeowners the option to lengthen that protection period, typically by a few years. Extended warranties are not included when you buy a new furnace – they are optional and can be purchased for an additional fee.
Registering Furnace Warranties Is a Must!
Lots of homeowners across the Louisville area believe that once they purchase a new furnace and have it installed, the warranty goes ahead and starts as expected. Unfortunately, this isn’t exactly how it works. You can do nothing and still have coverage, but it probably won’t be what you expect – register your furnace warranties!
Often, a base level of warranty protection is included with every furnace model, regardless of whether or not the homeowner registers the furnace warranty. However, the base warranty coverage is typically only half as long as what was expected! To get the full amount of warranty coverage, the brand may require warranty registration. For example, the base warranty offers a parts limited warranty of five years – if the homeowner registers, the warranty period is bumped up to 10 years!
How to Register Your Furnace Warranty
Sometimes, the company that installed the new furnace assists homeowners with furnace warranty registration – they just take care of it as part of their business processes. In many cases though, it’s up to the homeowner to make sure furnace warranties are registered. You may call your contractor for assistance with warranty registration, or you can do it online!
Today, most HVAC equipment manufacturers allow for warranty registration to be completed through the brand’s website. To do this, you need:
- Furnace model number
- Unit serial number
- Date the furnace was installed
- HVAC company name
- Contact info for HVAC company
Don’t Be Late!
Most equipment manufacturers require furnace warranties be registered within a specific amount of time following unit installation. Often, this is 60 to 90 days. If you miss this window, you still receive the base warranty, but you do not get the full warranty protection.
Make a Furnace Warranty Claim
Anytime your furnace breaks down or isn’t performing as well as it should, it’s time to schedule furnace repair with your trusted HVAC contractor. Once a technician arrives, he or she performs a thorough inspection of your heating system to identify the issues in play. Your technician is also able to tell you if this issue is something that is covered by your manufacturer warranty or installation warranty.
If a warranty issue is found, your contractor obtains appropriate replacement parts from the equipment manufacturer to make the repair. He or she also submits your warranty claim to your furnace’s manufacturer.
For valid manufacturer warranty claims, you are not responsible to pay for the new parts – these are covered under the terms of your warranty. It is likely that you will owe the contractor a service fee for time and labor, but thanks to the warranty coverage, the cost is much less than what you would’ve paid had there been no warranty. If the claim is made against your installation warranty, the cost is typically covered by your HVAC company.
Lookup Your Furnace Warranty
Don’t know if your furnace still has warranty coverage? No problem! Your HVAC technician checks before starting any work and is able to let you know if the warranty is or is not valid. Also, you can look up your furnace warranty information anytime online. Visit your furnace manufacturer’s website, as many have an easy to use lookup tool for homeowners. You just need your furnace model number and serial number in most cases.
Buying a Home with a New Furnace
A new furnace is a major draw for homebuyers. No one wants to deal with the expense of replacing a furnace shortly after moving in, or the surprise repairs that often come with older heating systems. Plus, most realize the silver linings of new furnaces as well – new furnace warranties. Homebuyers see a new furnace and think, “I’m all set!” … but are they?
When a homeowner buys and installs a new furnace, furnace warranties are in that person’s name. This means that while the furnace stays with the house, the warranty is not set up that way. Upon registration, it is only for the original purchaser.
Luckily, most furnace manufacturers have realized this protocol may cause issues when a furnace is replaced shortly before a home is sold, or in the few years prior. Now, many allow furnace warranties to be transferred once a home is sold, though there are some that do not.
Transfers for furnace warranties usually must be done within a certain period once the sale of the home has closed – just like the requirements for initial registration of furnace warranties. If the warranty transfer is not completed within the specified amount of time, the new homeowner will be unable to utilize warranty protection attached to the home’s heating system. In the case of furnace warranties transferring between old and new homeowners, equipment manufacturers usually charge a fee to do so.
Ok, so you buy a new home with a newer furnace and get the furnace warranties transferred over just fine – you probably think you’re all set and they work just as they did for the old homeowner who bough the unit in the first place. Depending on the manufacturer, this may not be the case at all. Upon the transfer of furnace warranties, some equipment manufacturers reduce the length of the warranty period for subsequent owners, or some of the original benefits have been eliminated. Depending on the age of the system, this may pretty well eliminate the coverage you were counting on for protection years down the road.
If you are planning to buy a new home, take the HVAC system into consideration and think about furnace warranties. You need to know:
- What is the warranty period?
- What are the terms of the warrany?
- Is the furnace still covered by the warranty?
- Are the furnace warranties transferrable?
- How does transferring the warranty affect coverage?
- How soon must the transfer be completed once the house is purchased?
It is important that you have the answers to these questions as they may greatly affect your homebuying decisions. If you buy a home with a newer furnace under warranty, you need to know the details ahead of time so you know exactly what to do to preserve warranty coverage once you close.
Call Jarboe’s for New Furnace Installation
Does your Louisville area home need a new furnace to ensure your family stays warm this winter? Jarboe’s helps you find the right Carrier furnace for your home that offers the efficiency and performance you desire as well as the warranty terms you need.
Get a free estimate for new furnace installation – call Jarboe’s today!