When to Repair or Replace Your Furnace

When the cold winter months arrive, a reliable furnace becomes an essential part of your home. It ensures that your living space remains warm and comfortable even in the harshest weather conditions.

However, like all mechanical systems, furnaces are not immune to wear and tear. So, the question arises: should you repair your furnace or replace it when it starts showing signs of trouble?

In this blog post, we’ll tackle:

  • The differences between repairs and replacements
  • The signs that indicate whether you need furnace repair or replacement
  • The cost difference between the two options
  • Furnace maintenance tips

Repair or replace furnace? We’ll help you understand everything you need to know.

Repairs vs. Replacements: Understanding the Difference

Before we delve into the decision-making process, it’s crucial to understand the fundamental differences between furnace repairs and replacements.

Furnace Repairs

Furnace repairs involve fixing specific issues or malfunctions in your existing heating system to restore its functionality. This option is generally less expensive than replacing the entire furnace and can extend the lifespan of your current unit. Repairs are typically the go-to solution when the problems are minor and the furnace is relatively new.

Furnace Replacements

On the other hand, furnace replacements involve completely removing your old heating system and installing a brand-new one. This option is chosen when the existing furnace is beyond repair, outdated, or when you want to upgrade to a more energy-efficient model. While replacements are a more significant investment upfront, they can provide long-term benefits in terms of energy savings and improved heating performance.

Now that we have a clear understanding of the differences between repairs and replacements, let’s explore the signs that indicate which option might be best for your situation.

Signs You Need Furnace Repair

Furnace issues can range from minor hiccups to more significant problems. Here are some common signs that suggest your furnace may be in need of repair:

  • Inconsistent Heating: If your furnace is struggling to maintain a consistent and comfortable temperature throughout your home, it may be due to a malfunctioning thermostat or other internal components.
  • Unusual Noises: Strange noises such as banging, squealing, or rattling coming from your furnace can indicate various issues, including loose parts, a damaged blower motor, or a faulty ignition system.
  • Increased Energy Bills: A sudden and unexplained spike in your energy bills could be a sign that your furnace is operating less efficiently, possibly due to a clogged filter or other problems.
  • Frequent Cycling: If your furnace turns on and off frequently (short cycling), it can lead to increased wear and tear on the system, reduced efficiency, and a shortened lifespan.
  • Yellow or Flickering Pilot Light: A yellow or flickering pilot light can indicate issues with combustion, such as a clogged burner or improper gas mixture, which can be hazardous if left unaddressed.
  • Poor Air Quality: Dust, allergens, and pollutants circulating in your home may be a result of a dirty or malfunctioning furnace filter.

If you notice any of these signs, it’s essential to have your furnace inspected by a professional technician. Timely repairs can prevent small issues from escalating into more significant problems and extend the life of your furnace.

Signs You Need a Furnace Replacement

While repairs can resolve many furnace issues, there are situations where a replacement becomes the more prudent choice. Here are some signs that suggest you may need a furnace replacement:

  • Age of the Furnace: The typical lifespan of a furnace is around 15-20 years. If your furnace is nearing or surpassing this age range and experiencing frequent problems, it’s often more cost-effective to invest in a new, energy-efficient model.
  • Frequent and Costly Repairs: If you find yourself calling for furnace repairs frequently, and the cumulative cost of these repairs is becoming a significant financial burden, a replacement may be a wiser long-term investment.
  • Declining Energy Efficiency: Older furnaces tend to be less energy-efficient, leading to higher utility bills. Replacing your furnace with a modern, high-efficiency model can result in substantial energy savings over time.
  • Uneven Heating: If some rooms in your home are consistently colder than others, even after repairs and adjustments, it may be a sign that your furnace is no longer capable of providing even heat distribution.
  • Safety Concerns: If your furnace is showing signs of safety issues, such as carbon monoxide leaks, it’s critical to replace it immediately to protect the health and safety of your household.
  • Lack of Parts Availability: For older furnace models, finding replacement parts can become increasingly difficult and costly as time goes on. This can lead to prolonged downtime during repairs.

When these signs become evident, consulting with a heating professional is essential to determine whether a furnace replacement is the best course of action.

Cost Difference: Repair vs. Replacement

One of the primary factors that influence the decision to repair or replace your furnace is cost. Here’s a breakdown of the cost difference between the two options:

Furnace Repairs

The cost of furnace repairs can vary widely depending on the nature and complexity of the problem. Minor issues, such as a faulty thermostat or a clogged filter, may only cost a few hundred dollars to repair. However, more significant repairs, such as replacing a blower motor or heat exchanger, can range from $500 to $1,500 or more.

Furnace Replacements

The cost of a furnace replacement can be significantly higher than repairs, primarily due to the expense of purchasing a new unit and the labor involved in installation. On average, a new furnace, including installation, can range from $2,500 to $7,500 or more, depending on factors like furnace size, brand, and energy efficiency.

While the upfront cost of a replacement may seem daunting, it’s essential to consider the long-term benefits, such as reduced energy bills and increased comfort, when making your decision.

7 Furnace Maintenance Tips

Regardless of whether you choose furnace repair or replacement, regular maintenance is essential to keep your heating system running smoothly and efficiently. Here are some furnace maintenance tips to prolong the life of your unit:

1) Change the Air Filter:

Replace or clean your furnace’s air filter regularly (usually every 1-3 months) to ensure proper airflow and maintain air quality.

2) Schedule Annual Inspections:

Arrange for annual furnace inspections by a professional technician to identify and address potential issues early.

3) Clean Vents and Ducts:

Clean the vents and ducts in your home to ensure unobstructed airflow and even heating.

4) Programmable Thermostat:

Invest in a programmable thermostat to regulate your furnace’s operation and reduce energy consumption when you’re not at home.

5) Seal Leaks:

Inspect and seal any gaps or leaks in your home’s insulation to prevent heat loss and improve energy efficiency.

6) Keep the Area Clear:

Ensure that the area around your furnace is clear of clutter and debris to maintain proper ventilation and safety.

7) Check Carbon Monoxide Detectors:

Install and regularly check carbon monoxide detectors in your home to monitor for any dangerous emissions.

Get a Replacement Furnace

Deciding whether to repair or replace your furnace depends on various factors, including the age of your unit, the nature of the problems, and your budget. It’s crucial to consult with a professional heating technician to assess your specific situation and provide expert guidance. At Aquarius Home Services, we can help you find the exact right solution for you and your home. Contact us today to get started!

John Reuter
John Reuter
1719011907
I was scheduled for Thursday appointment in the morning. After waiting ALL day Thursday, at 3:30 pm I was informed that the technition was not going to be coming that day, I rescheduled for Friday after 10:00 and had to wait until almost 12:00 (noon) for the technition to arrive. The technician took only about 15 minutes to complete the job. To add insult to injury, he then charged us $292.40 which I feel was (is) excessive.
Laura Wardell
Laura Wardell
1718985974
Jack O
Jack O
1718934864
Ethan was here today for our A/C check-up. He was very thorough and professional. Explained everything did an excellent job. Thanks
Arif Ali
Arif Ali
1718907329
Good communication, prompt reply to my inquiry.Professional, knowledgeable and courteous technician, Josiah, who came to the site to perform the work. Our heater was leaking. The root cause was identified and corrected immediately at the spot. Thank you.
Kent Toft
Kent Toft
1718901229
I use this business every time!!They are 10 stars great!!!!!!I can go on and onThey are the best!!!Riley is my main guyHe is polite, courteous,and very thorough!!He explains everything!!!When he us done everything is clean & perfectGGGRREAT guy. Compliment to your business and to himselfI will always go with Aquarius and ALWAYS WITH RILEYThank everyone at Aquarius!!!Kent and Kim Toft. Blaine,MN
David Campbell
David Campbell
1718892842
Very professional. Thank you!
00
00
1718858125
This place was amazing. I called before 8 AM today and I was asked how they could make me smile today!! I thought I had the wrong number. Nope. I told them if they could get my central air working, I would smile. 😀Shortly after the call I received a text message with a brief bio about the technician Mike, with years of experience, stating he was on his way. If I wanted to track his location, I could click the link. Once Mike arrived it didn’t take him long to figure out what was going on with my central air unit. He described everything in detail about what was wrong with it and he took the time to answer several questions I had. Mike also cleaned the unit when he was done. I am very pleased with all aspects of this company and will definitely be using them again!
Mike (Just Mike)
Mike (Just Mike)
1718846047
Always a good experience!
David Tingstad
David Tingstad
1718834301
Nate and A. J. did some electrical work at my house. They were both knowledgeable and professional as well as personable. The finished work looks excellent. I would highly recommend them and Aquarius for any work you need done.
John Meyers
John Meyers
1718830702
Brandon was here to inspect our A/C. He did a wonderful job and suggested a couple items that might need replacing down the road. This was a very good experience and I highly recommend Aquarius.
Wendy Page
Wendy Page
1718821885
Ethan is an excellent tech and Aquarius associate. Very knowledgeable, very thorough, answered all of my questions and is respectful. Provided helpful HVAC information.
Ronald Kath
Ronald Kath
1718759245
Riley took time to explain all the services and answerd all my questions. He is very professional and knowledgeable. I feel my HVAC is working at top efficiency with the suggested preventive maintenance services. Those prevented maintenance services will help to avoid a future breakdown. He is personable. I will definitely be requesting Riley for my next scheduled service.
G ROSS
G ROSS
1718740363
Nicole Eggan
Nicole Eggan
1718736861
Everything went as planned. Installers were friendly and informative.
Ginger Murray
Ginger Murray
1718735936
We really like Aquarius' professional and friendly service. They always respond quickly when we have an issue, and we like being on their service plans for water, heating, and AC.
Debra Larsen
Debra Larsen
1718674439
Wow!! Talk about over and above in customer service! As a homeowner I highly recommend Aquarius. They were incredibly thorough and also took the time to do “extras” for me that I didn’t expect. They found and fixed problems that other companies would have walked away from. I have owned my home for 28 years and I am thrilled and just blown away by the level of excellence and customer service I received. I am going to use Aquarius for absolutely everything. Everything. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!
Alan Wetzel
Alan Wetzel
1718657730
Micah was thorough, efficient, and explained things while servicing the water heater. Also he is a pleasant person to be with during the service call.
Ben Nelson
Ben Nelson
1718647531
Great experience. Thanks for getting our A/C back on so quickly.
Terry Bilse -Kraft
Terry Bilse -Kraft
1718637426
Mike was very professional, polite and did a very good job of letting me know the condition of our AC unit.
Cherie. Skildum
Cherie. Skildum
1718633975
While the plumber was the nicest guy, I truly felt that the service was very slow. Installing 2 faucets and a shower head and simple control should never take 4 1/2 hours!! And our plumbing was up to code! A pretty big bill for a little work.
Chuck
Chuck
1718544944
Nick is awesome…figured out the recurring issue instantly. I can’t thank him enough for getting us up and running promptly and efficiently. Super positive attitude even after a long day, would request him for any future work.
Bill Sherck
Bill Sherck
1718471827
AC not working and Nicholas got to us on the weekend and problem-solved the blown fuses. No charge as warranty work. Professional. Thank goodness before excessive heat warbing! Thanks Aquarius!
Pat Alexander
Pat Alexander
1718405710
The most thorough AC check up I have EVER had in the 18 years I have owned my house. And I get AC and furnace check up done EVERY year.
Ileana Essig
Ileana Essig
1718398249
Ethan was friendly and very informative. When he arrived, I made it clear that I was not interested in additional services, just the tuneup/inspection of my HVAC system. He went over the results and answered my questions with thorough explanations without trying to upsell me via a list of ’recommendations’, which I sincerely appreciated.
Richard Pierson
Richard Pierson
1718388233
Michael Brandt
Michael Brandt
1718382329
Nick and Marcus were knowledgeable, efficient, and friendly. Great service call.
Nathan McCauley
Nathan McCauley
1718325023
Ethan did a great job servicing our A/C unit and went above and beyond the call of duty by removing the mice that had taken up residence in the unit.Thank you.
LA Paul
LA Paul
1718317846
Nicholas and Marcus went over everything in detail and explained what should be prioritized. Even tolerated the cat that wanted to supervise their work. Great employees for Aquarius, always responsive and professional. Ended up scheduling another appointment for some electrical repair. Great company to work with.
John Stiehl
John Stiehl
1718316855
Anson MacFarlane
Anson MacFarlane
1718314204
Great service!
Joel DeMarais
Joel DeMarais
1718222835
Completely satisfied with the work Chris, Nick and Matt did installing a new Furnace and A/C system. They were very thorough, courteous and professional!
Ted ALLISON
Ted ALLISON
1718216675
Raymond Cruz
Raymond Cruz
1718192723
RayVery satisfied and impressed!Thanks to Travis, David, Adam & EricFriendly, professional and knowledgeableThey arrived explained what was going to happen and kept me updated on the process.Answered my many questions.As they finished cleaning everything up. They again insured that I had no other questions before leaving.GREAT JOB!!
Patty George
Patty George
1718150859
Brandon was great! He gave great advice, had attention to details, was helpful and trustworthy. I love that I can be in a service program with Aquarius to help me remember the updates and cleanings during the year, especially when I have too many things to remember to do. ☺️
Bryce Chu
Bryce Chu
1718148665
Nick and his partner were incredibly thorough in their inspection of my AC and furnace unit. They clearly pointed out areas of concern as well as what working properly both inside and outside. They presented clear options for repair or intervention. I felt was given all the information I needed and had all my questions answered in simple direct language that most laymen unfamiliar with jargon could understand. Highly recommend.
Dale and Carol Tilden
Dale and Carol Tilden
1718131763
Aquarius takes excellent care of my water softening and heating as well as my furnace and air conditioning systems. Also just had a new electric panel installed (needed updating).
Debra Klejeski
Debra Klejeski
1718055650
Jon answered our questions and explained everything on the checklist. He was very professional and courteous!
Jeff Peterson
Jeff Peterson
1718055086
Wally Lee
Wally Lee
1718044949
Brandon did a great job for us with our A/C general maintenance check. Very knowledgeable, and was professional and efficient.
Joe Capistrant
Joe Capistrant
1718042522
Nate is wonderful. Knows his stuff. Resolved a troublesome problem. Very pleasant, enjoyable fellow.
Cindy Rae Dainsberg
Cindy Rae Dainsberg
1718034743
Brandon was exceptional. Professional. Knowledgeable. Efficient. Kind. Caring. Remembers the client from previous visits. An excellent example of what Customer Service should be to keep customers coming back.
Gary Smith
Gary Smith
1718030176
Excellent technician. Nick is an outstanding young man and very knowledgeable. I felt like he was giving me an honest assessment of my system.
mary bond
mary bond
1717801266
Our water heater went out on Fri evening. We called Aquarius early Sat morning and they said earliest they could get out was Mon. On Sun I received a text confirming our Mon appointment but on Mon morning they called and said the earliest they could get to us was the following week !We should be without hot water till then ? We are not a new customer…. 5 months previously we had a new furnace and air conditioner installed at quite an expense. I am appalled at their service or rather lack there of ! As an established customer they felt waiting approximately 10days without water was acceptable Bad, Bad, Bad !Two weeks later…The air conditioner Aquarius installed in Dec failed to cool when we turned it on on our 1st warm days. After the poor experience I had had with them I didn’t want to deal with them again but since it was under warranty I had to. We were told we would have a technician out Wed morning. After waiting at home all day they called and canceled at 4pm. We were rescheduled for Fri morning. We had several calls during the day with updates At 5:22 pm we received a cal the tech would be here at 6pm. We cancelled our dinner reservation and are awaiting his arrival.I realize our air conditioning is not an emergency but we have spent 2days waiting for our scheduled service. This is in addition to the 10days they wanted us to wait for a new water heater(which I do think is an emergency) I feel bad for the tech who I’m sure has had a long day and must now come at 6 on a Fri evening. Once again I repeat Aquarius has failed us again !!
Todd Schull
Todd Schull
1717795955
Riley was the tech that performed our membership maintenance check-up. He did an outstanding job explaining what was included in the maintenance check-up. After his inspection, he was very detailed, using pictures, to help describe what he found and he made recommendations on what should be addressed now and what could wait until our next membership maintenance check-up. He was very thorough doing the repairs, cleaning impeccably both our furnace and air conditioner. We are going to request Riley for all our member maintenance check-ups going forward.
Gary Winkel
Gary Winkel
1717786300
John Keller
John Keller
1717778469
Gordy replaced my lawn faucet once it was clear that it could not be repaired. He explained the problem and the process to fix it in a clear and professional manner. The cost were what I expected for such a job.
Robert McDivitt
Robert McDivitt
1717771730
Great service from Ethan. Very helpful and professional.
Frank Potocnik
Frank Potocnik
1717721504
Service Tech Nick was great. Thank you
Anthony Mielzarek
Anthony Mielzarek
1717713912
Riley is always a professional when coming to the house for HVAC services. He is always a pleasure to deal with! Even my dogs like him!
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