Snow on pine needles

6 Tips to Help You Determine Repair Versus Replacement on Your Heating System

It’s cold and you realized your heating system suddenly stopped working and there’s a problem with it. You keep your fingers crossed as you call and schedule an emergency call with an HVAC pro, hoping that it won’t be a costly repair. Like most homeowners, you probably think that all HVAC contractors want you to replace the system even if you didn’t need to.

There are certain parts that are worth repairing and certain reasons that will help you determine whether it’s most cost efficient to repair or replace. Let’s dive right in.


1. Minor Faulty Electrical Issues: issues related to fuses and ignition modules.

2. Condensate removal pump: only about 5% of the cost of the entire system.

3. Pressure and temperature sensors: about 10% of the cost of the entire system.


4. Compressor: If it’s not under warranty, it will be a very costly repair. You will be looking at 50 to 75 percent of the cost of the entire replacement. If you’re going to replace this critical component of the system, it does not guarantee that the other components will not fail within a short period of time.

5. Cracked heat exchanger: similar to the compressor, this is a very costly repair as well. It will not guarantee your system from operating sufficiently since the other parts in the system will most likely fail and need to be replaced as well.

6. Rule of Thumb: Is the system beyond three-quarters of its life expectancy? Does the repair cost more than a third of the replacement? For example, a 15 years old furnace with a $750 repair, it is not a cost-efficient choice.

Golden Rule when doing a replacement:

Opt for a higher efficiency system. For hot water boiler, 95 to 96 percent. For force hot air, 97% percent. Efficiency percentage converts to dollars, therefore the higher the efficiency, the more money you’ll save.

> For example: The minimum AFUE (annual fuel utilization efficiency number), which measures the percentage of the fuel that’s converted to heat, is 80% minimum today, according to Department of Energy (DOE). This means that the higher efficiency your replacement is, the more you’ll save. If your new system is 95% AFUE, it will decrease your bills as much as 25%! A little bonus, this will earn you a tax credit from the federal government. See if the efficiency model will pay for itself.

Besides these six rules. Three things to keep in mind when determining repair versus replacement: comfort, finance and safety. Keep you and your family safe and comfortable while looking at your financial situation. Should you ever need a heating system repair or consider a potential replacement, our evaluation visit is FREE! Call (617) 977-3101 or schedule a visit online!