Deciding whether to repair or replace your furnace can be a tough call, and it’s one that will affect your comfort and energy budget for the months ahead. Use this guide to decide whether it’s worth putting more money into an old system or if it’s time to bite the bullet and start the heating season with new, efficient equipment.
Have you spent close to 50 percent of what the system’s worth on repairs? If so, it’s probably time to consider a replacement to stop spending money on a system that has outlived its useful life.
Do your energy bills rise each year with no substantial change in fuel or electricity costs? As furnaces age, they can use more energy. At some point, a new system makes sense because you’ll realize substantial energy savings with new equipment. Choosing a new furnace with a high AFUE (annual fuel utilization efficiency) rating will likely reduce monthly operating costs. Since the heating season in our region is longer than the cooling one, you could be saving a lot over the course of the winter, especially if your current furnace is oversized.
Is an entity offering tax credits or rebates to replace your system? Discounts, credits and rebates can make the decision to repair or replace your furnace easier, since incentives lower the cost of buying a new furnace.
Are you looking at catastrophic repairs? A cracked heat exchanger is a health and safety hazard and it’s an expensive repair, even if it’s possible. The gas company or HVAC professional has to shut your system down, since the cracks enable carbon monoxide to escape into your home’s air supply. The labor involved in replacing a heat exchanger can be extensive and easily exceed the value of your system.
Making the decision to repair or replace your furnace is easier when you consult with an HVAC professional. If you’d like expert advice, contact Stack Heating & Cooling. We’ve provided HVAC services for the greater Cleveland area since 1976.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Cleveland, Ohio about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about furnaces and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.