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How to Choose the Most Cost-Effective Solution for Your Home

When the water heater, furnace, or air conditioner in your Central or Southeastern Pennsylvania home is malfunctioning, you can’t just ignore the problem. Aside from causing you discomfort, problems with your home comfort systems can lead to health problems if they go too long without a resolution. Depending on the issue you’re experiencing, you will receive different recommendations on what to do to solve the problem. And while you can always trust Quality Degree to make an honest and appropriate recommendation, it’s good to have a general idea of what can and can’t be repaired, and how to tell when it’s cheaper to replace than to repair.

Water Heater

Water heaters don’t have a lot of moving parts, so breakdowns are rare. If you’ve suddenly found yourself without hot water, it’s probably because:

  • The pilot light on your gas water heater burned out.

  • The circuit breaker to your electric water heater tripped.

  • The heating element or burner failed.

  • The thermostat broke.

  • A valve got stuck.

Quality Degree can repair any of these issues for you for much less than the cost of a new water heater. The only time we recommend replacing a water heater with one of these problems is if the water heater is more than 10 years old. Most water heaters last between 10-15 years, so we won’t recommend repairing a water heater you’re going to have to replace soon anyway.

What can’t be repaired? While most water heater issues can be repaired with relative ease, if your water heater has sprung a leak, replacement is your only option. When this is the case, you can rely on Quality Degree to help you choose the right new water heater to meet your family’s needs.

Home Comfort System

When it comes to a broken down furnace, the first thing you should consider is your family’s safety. If the furnace’s problem puts your family at risk—a cracked heat exchanger, for example—replace the furnace. It’s not worth the risk!

If the problem isn’t a safety risk, the next step is to consider the furnace age. Furnaces typically last about 15-20 years, so if yours is in its teens already, you may want to discuss with your Quality Degree technician the pros and cons of replacement over repair.

For air conditioners, it’s all about energy efficiency. Since 2010, air conditioners have become significantly more energy efficient; today’s systems can cool your home just as effectively while using less than half the energy of older units! This means that if your AC unit needs anything more than a minor repair, it may be more cost-effective in the long run to replace it. Your Quality Degree technician can help you decide for sure

The Age Multiplier. If you are thinking of replacement over repair, use a simple age multiplier equation to judge cost-effectiveness. Take the cost of repair and multiply it by the age of the furnace or air conditioner. If the total is greater than the cost of a new unit, it’s probably more cost-effective to replace the unit than to repair it.

For example, let’s say there is a problem with the thermostat on your 4-year-old furnace that will cost $250 to repair. If you multiply $250 by four years, you get $1000. (250 x 4 = 1000) Replacing your furnace will cost a minimum of $1500, so in this case, repairing the furnace is more cost-effective than replacing it.

Whether Your Repairing or Replacing, Quality Degree Can Help!

Whether you’re having problems with hot water or hot air, Quality Degree can help resolve the problem. Make sure you call us at (610) 600-1108 when your water heater or home comfort system stops working. Our highly qualified technicians will diagnose the problem and discuss your options with you, so you can make the right choice for your household. Call us now!