The Building Intelligence Center assists home inspectors, commercial building inspectors, contractors, service technicians, insurance providers, home owners, and property managers in decoding the age of mechanical appliances such as furnaces, boilers, air conditioners, heat pumps, packaged rooftop units (RTU's), packaged terminal air conditioners (PTAC's), and water heaters.
The date of manufacture for many of these appliances is often encoded within the appliance serial number. Our website provides a resource library of one of the most comprehensive lists of mechanical appliance brand names along with examples of their various serial number styles, and then shows you where the manufacture date has been coded within those serial numbers.
The age of your furnace, air conditioner, water heater, or boiler can play an important part of upkeep and maintenance, and can help anticipate the likelihood of impending repairs or replacement. Mechanical systems do not have an infinite service life. The industry average service life for most combustion furnaces is 15-20 years; most air conditioners and heat pumps is 10-15 years; and most storage tank type water heaters is 8-12 years. With routine maintenance and servicing, the service life of these systems can be extended 5-10 or more years.
Upkeep and professional servicing of your critical heating and cooling systems is an important part of routine building maintenance. For improved safety and longevity of these systems, the Building Intelligence Center recommends inspections and professional servicing be performed by a qualified inspector or service technician/contractor seasonally or annually.
To determine the age of your HVAC system or water heater, begin your research by locating the brand name and serial number on your HVAC system or water heater. Then select one of the indexes below which will take you to an alphabetized list of manufacture brand names. Select the brand name for your particular mechanical system, and then locate the example serial number style that most closely resembles the serial number located on your system. Our examples will show you if and where the manufacture date has been coded with the serial number for your unit.
An extended version of how to use our website and other helpful tips can be viewed HERE
We have also added a new IRC Building Code reference index for commercial property inspectors and home inspectors. This index breaks down and links to the building code references by systems and components to help you quickly locate and research a particular chapter or section of the current model building code.
Thank you for visiting and using our resource site!
Bill W. & John B.
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