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Repair vs. Replacement: How to Tell What Your Furnace Needs

Learn when you should invest in repairs and when it’s time to replace your furnace completely.

As your furnace ages, you may think more and more about investing in a replacement. But how do you know that the time is right for a replacement? Sometimes repairs are enough to keep your furnace working through another season, but eventually repair costs can be overwhelming.

If you’re weighing your options between furnace repair and furnace replacement in Clackamas, OR, our team is here to help. We can help you weigh the pros and cons of repair versus replacement and let you know what your furnace needs. In the meantime, you can read more to learn when you should invest in repairs and when it’s time to replace your furnace completely.

Furnace Repairs

You may consider investing in furnace repairs if something small goes wrong that is inexpensive to fix. When it comes to repairs, the general rule is that if a repair costs more than 50% of the value of a new furnace, you should just go ahead with the replacement instead of the repair. If the cost of repair is less than 50%, you may choose to repair your existing furnace instead and extend its life.

Keep in mind that if you are making frequent repairs, you may want to add up all of those repair bills over time to see how much they cost. If they surpass the 50% value, that’s a sign of looming furnace replacement. While it’s normal to have an occasional repair need, you should not need repair services frequently.

Furnace Replacement

There are some red flags that can indicate it is time to replace your furnace sooner rather than later. One of the signs is a gas leak. If you have a gas furnace that cracks and leaks carbon monoxide into your home, the system needs to be replaced immediately. Carbon monoxide poses health risks for your family and also poses fire hazards.

Signs of a carbon monoxide leak, include:

  • Your burner flame burning yellow or orange instead of blue
  • Noticing moisture buildup on your windows or walls
  • Rust developing anywhere inside your furnace
  • Soot streaks around the burner

You may also consider your furnace's age when you think about a replacement. A furnace can easily last for 15 to 30 years, depending on how well you care for it. But once you reach the 15-year mark, it’s time to begin paying closer attention to how your furnace is running. It could easily last a decade longer, but there’s also a good chance that it could break down next year. 

When you’re in tune with the sounds and smells coming from your furnace, you can identify problems early and address them before they grow and spread. This is a great way to stay ahead of major repairs and extend the life of your furnace in the short term. You may be able to put off a replacement by taking excellent care of your furnace.

Contact Chase Heating and Cooling today to schedule an appointment with our professionals. We're "Keeping Homes Comfortable In All Seasons."