My Heat Exchanger Is Broken: Do I Need to Buy a New Furnace?

Posted on: December 9, 2020

Can a heat exchanger be replaced? Since cracked heat exchangers are associated with serious health risks, it’s no wonder homeowners look for an effective and quick solution when their heat exchanger breaks. How do you safely replace a heat exchanger? Do you have to replace the entire furnace if the heat exchanger is broken?

Hot summers and cold winter Inland Empire evenings can cause heating repair experts in Riverside to be overloaded with service calls and concerns about a heat exchanger replacement. Cracks in the heat exchanger can cause dangerous combustion gases to leak into your home, which makes immediate action necessary. However, the replacement process for a heat exchanger is not as simple as you may think, and we’ll explain why.

Can a heat exchanger be replaced?

A cracked heat exchanger is a serious cause for concern. If you’ve noticed that your exchanger is damaged, you will have little time to make a decision since carbon monoxide can leak into your home and cause harm to your health. HVAC professionals are capable of working immediately to resolve this major issue, or any others involving your heat exchanger.

Although it is possible to remove a damaged heat exchanger and replace it with a new one, this is not the most viable option for many homeowners due to the costs associated with the replacement process. Naturally, nobody wants to hear that they will need to purchase a new furnace. However, if the repair job costs more than half the price of getting a new system, purchasing a new furnace may be the better choice.

Due to the high costs of replacement and the risks of carbon monoxide leaks, most homeowners choose to replace the entire furnace instead of getting a new heat exchanger.

How much does it cost to replace a heat exchanger?

But how costly is heat exchanger replacement, exactly? While this will depend on the area you live, you can expect to pay anywhere from $1,500 to $3,500. This is due to the replacement process being intricate and taking up to 8 hours of labor to complete. Considering how time-sensitive dealing with a cracked exchanger is, it can be difficult to decide what the more financially viable option would be in your circumstances. Action is here to help! We offer upfront estimates, special financing and zero-down payment options. We promise to work with you to find the ideal system for your home and lifestyle.

Do I need to replace the heat exchanger or buy a new furnace?

If you’ve found yourself in a hurry to decide between replacing the heat exchanger or replacing the furnace altogether, ask yourself the following questions:

Is my furnace older than 10 years?

If your furnace is 10 or more years old, it is probably nearing the end of its lifespan. In that case, spending about $2,000 on replacing the heat exchanger wouldn’t be the smartest decision.

If you’re not sure about the age of your furnace, look for the furnace serial number. It is often written or engraved on a metal or paper tag which is often located on the furnace cover panel. Once you have the serial number, visit the manufacturer’s website and perform a quick search to determine the approximate age of the furnace.

If you are unable to find the serial number, you can also try contacting the company that installed the furnace and ask them when the unit was manufactured and installed.

Is the furnace able to properly heat my entire home?

Can your furnace meet your heating needs? Has it experienced any other problems such as frequent thermostat malfunctions or serious delayed ignition issues? There are numerous reasons why your furnace may be unable to keep every room in your home cozy and warm; these factors include incorrect sizing, improper installation, and old age.

Unfortunately, a furnace which cannot meet your heating needs currently, will not be able to meet them with a brand new heat exchanger installed either. If this situation sounds familiar, you most likely should consider replacing the exchanger or replacing the whole furnace.

Is my furnace under warranty?

Most manufacturers will offer extended “parts” warranties for furnace heat exchangers, which may range from 10 years coverage to a limited lifetime warranty. However, this type of warranty tends to only cover the costs of the heat exchanger itself, excluding the labor needed for the replacement. Since the replacement process can last for 8 hours or even longer, the labor costs may take up the bulk of the total repair cost.

The labor warranties offered by furnace installers tend to last between 1 and 5 years after the installation. If your furnace is under a labor warranty, replacing only the heat exchanger would be considered the better option, as the warranty will probably cover most of the repair costs. If the labor warranty has expired, however, you may want to consider replacing the furnace altogether.

If you’re unsure whether your furnace is still under warranty, make sure to contact the installation contractors. They will be able to tell you if your unit is still covered by the labor or parts warranty, and perhaps advise you on the best course of action in your situation.

Action is At Your Service for Heating Repair in Riverside

How much does it cost to replace a heat exchanger? At Action Air, we know how stressful it can be to make a quick decision when your furnace or one of its components breaks down. Our award-winning company and certified technicians are known for their quick responses and vast knowledge of heating and cooling systems. Whether you want us to inspect your heat exchanger for cracks or help you choose a new furnace for your home near Santa Rosa Plateau, we’ll provide you with all the information you need to make an informed decision.

It is our goal to keep San Diego and Riverside County homeowners comfortable and safe all year round, offering reliable HVAC solar services and installments. Our professional, passionately hard working technicians are highly qualified, while our pricing system is fully transparent and based on competitive industry rates. Get in touch with Action Air Conditioning, Heating and Solar to ask our team any questions today!