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HVAC Repairs: Most Expensive vs Least Expensive

Your HVAC system is one of the most important components of your home and is essential for keeping your family comfortable year-round. However, these systems can be expensive to repair or replace if they break down.

In this blog, we’ll help you avoid costly HVAC system repairs and know what to expect when your technician diagnoses a problem.

What is the Most Expensive HVAC Repair?

One of the most expensive HVAC repairs is replacing a faulty compressor. The compressor is the heart of the air conditioning system, pumping refrigerant through the system. If the compressor fails, the entire system will need to be replaced. Compressor replacement can cost several thousand dollars because it is labor-intensive (and refrigerant isn’t cheap!), making it one of the most expensive HVAC repairs.

What are Some Other Common Expensive HVAC Repairs?

Other costly HVAC repairs include:

  • Replacing a condenser coil
  • Repairing a refrigerant leak
  • Fixing a bad inducer motor 

While these repairs can be expensive, they are often necessary to keep an HVAC system running smoothly with a long life span.

Additional reading: 7 Secrets To Extending The Life Of Your HVAC System

What is the Least Expensive HVAC Repair?

There are some problems that are quite small and easily fixed and can prevent costly HVAC repairs. One of the easiest and least expensive to fix is replacing a clogged air filter. In fact, this is one job you might be able to do yourself depending on the HVAC system you have. Air filters should be replaced every 3 to 6 months, so it’s good to get in the habit of checking and replacing them regularly.

The cost of not checking this inexpensive HVAC component can be high. A clogged filter not only lowers your indoor air quality, but can cause your system to work harder than it needs to, leading to higher energy bills and increased wear and tear on your equipment. It can even lead to a blower motor or capacitor failure, resulting in a more costly repair.

What are Some Other Common Inexpensive Repairs?

Other common inexpensive repairs include:

  • Fixing a failed condensate pump that pumps the water from your HVAC system out of your home
  • Replacing a worn contactor that manages the various HVAC system circuits
  • A blown fuse is easy to replace but if it happens regularly it may indicate a deeper issue in your HVAC system.
  • New batteries in a thermostat

Which HVAC Parts are Most Likely to Need Replacing?

HVAC systems are composed of many different parts, all of which work together to keep your home or office comfortable. Over time, however, these parts can begin to wear out, affecting the system’s performance. While some parts may last for years without any issue, others may need to be replaced more frequently.

We have covered some of these above like air filters, capacitors, fuses, and condensate pumps but there are a few more parts you might find yourself replacing more often. Here are more of the most commonly replaced parts in an HVAC system:

  • Motors – in both furnaces and ACs, motors that run the blowers and fans have a somewhat high failure rate. 
  • Coils – the coils in an HVAC system can become clogged with dirt and debris, causing the system to overheat. A dirty coil should be cleaned regularly and replaced as needed.
  • Thermostats – thermostats can wear out over time and may need to be replaced every 5-7 years.

What are the Top Factors that Affect the Cost of your HVAC Repair?

The major factors that will affect the total cost of your HVAC repair can include:

  • Brand of HVAC system installed
  • Energy efficient levels of the system – SEER or AFUE ratings
  • Local labor costs such as the lack of skilled trained labor
  • Economy
  • Supply chain disruptions

How much do HVAC Repair, Service, and Maintenance Cost?

HVAC repair can be a costly endeavor, but there are ways to keep costs down. One of the best ways to reduce the cost of HVAC repair is to perform regular maintenance on your system. Routine maintenance can catch issues before they become a larger, more expensive repair.

A typical maintenance repair call costs between $300 and $450. If you have specialty equipment such as a boiler, oil furnace or geothermal heat pump those costs could be higher. A major perk of preventative maintenance is that it costs less than emergency repairs and replacements, which can be several thousand dollars.

At Jacobs, we offer a variety of maintenance plans to keep your system running efficiently and reliably. Learn more about our Maintenance Agreements.

How Often Should Your HVAC System Receive Maintenance?

To keep your furnace or air conditioning unit running smoothly and prevent costly HVAC repairs, have your unit serviced by a professional yearly or if you have a heat pump, every six months. Have your AC unit checked in the spring and your furnace in the fall so they are ready to keep your family comfortable for the coming season. 

Proper maintenance will help to catch any minor problems before they become big ones. Also, be sure to keep an eye on your energy bills. If you see a sudden spike, it could be an indication that your unit is not operating as efficiently as it should be. By taking these simple steps, you can help to keep your HVAC unit in good working order and avoid expensive repairs down the road.

Additional reading: When to Service Your Air Conditioner (And How Often)

How Jacobs Can Help

As any homeowner knows, the comfort of your home depends on a well-functioning HVAC system. In the summer, it keeps your home cool and in the winter, it keeps your home warm. But like any mechanical system, your HVAC system needs regular care and maintenance to keep it running smoothly. Without proper care, your HVAC system will start to break down, costing you more money in repairs and ultimately shortening its lifespan.

Jacobs Heating & Air Conditioning offers a variety of HVAC maintenance plans to keep your system running efficiently and reliably. All our agreements feature Saturday service, scheduling reminders, and monthly payment options. Our repairs and service are Energy Star Compliant and meet the ACCA national standards for residential maintenance. Jacobs technicians are trained on the latest technology and equipment. They are tested and certified through North American Technician Excellence (NATE) so you never have to worry about the quality of our service.

About the Author

Amanda Jacobs portrait

Amanda Jacobs, Internal Project Manager

Amanda Jacobs is an Internal Projects Manager and 3rd generation member of Jacobs Heating & Air Conditioning. She received her MBA from Seattle University and has worked for a leading HVAC training and consulting firm. When not talking HVAC on the Jacobs Blog, you can find her on the golf course or whipping up her famous vegan chili.