If your furnace is not exactly firing on all cylinders or has stopped working altogether then it may well be the time to decide that you might be better off in the long run getting a new one fitted rather than face regular repair and maintenance bills, if the furnace has been around for some while.
When thinking about your best course of action, one of the first questions you will probably ask yourself is how much does a new furnace cost?
Here is a look at what is involved in getting your furnace replaced and what you need to know before you go ahead and get it done.
The right type
First on your list should be working out what type of furnace you should be installing. If your existing furnace is somewhere around 15-20 years old then it is reasonable to assume that the different choices and options now available to you simply weren’t around when it was first called into service all those years ago, and you might even have an oil furnace whereas natural gas is now the default choice and tend to be more efficient as well.
A typical gas furnace will cost you anywhere between $2,500 and maybe more than $10,000 depending on the size of the system needed to provide enough heat for your needs. Your chosen supplier should have an HVAC certification, which will ensure that they make the right choice when it comes to recommending the size of system that you need in order to achieve maximum efficiency.
The main factor that will influence the price you pay for your new furnace is the efficiency rating that it has been given. In simple terms, the more advanced the manufacturing process and the number of high-quality features that the furnace model possesses will decree the system’s efficiency, so you invariably get what you pay for.
Higher-efficiency furnaces have advanced features and will mean that they are more expensive than some options available but you should remember that you should achieve much lower costs on the back end, so you are in effect paying up-front for making greater savings over the lifetime of the furnace.
Ideally you should try and find the budget for a furnace with a rating of at least 90% annual fuel utilization efficiency and bear in mind that at the top of the range in terms of price and maximum efficiency, is going to be a furnace with a rating of 98 AFUE, due to the model boasting advanced features such as a modulating gas valve and variable-speed air handler.
Don’t forget to allow for labor costs when working out your budget for buying a new furnace. You will probably be quoted an hourly rate rather than a fixed rate for installing the furnace and you should probably allow for about 8-10 hours of install work at a rate of somewhere in the region of $75 per hour.
It would be best to budget at least a $1,000 for a complete install, as there might be other work to do such as modifying the duct work to accommodate a different model to the furnace you are replacing.
Getting a new furnace is always going to be expensive as it is a major household purchase, but it should work out to be money well spent when you check the heating bills after it has been installed and you start to gain from much-improved fuel efficiency.
Robert McKinney is a home contractor with a passion for the practical and cost-effective. After years on the job, he enjoys blogging about basic home maintenance and renovation.