Should I Repair or Replace My Heating Oil System?

Written on: September 7, 2021

hvac installation maineAt some point, you will need to decide if you should spend money to repair your heating oil system or replace it with a more efficient and modern heating oil furnace or oil boiler. While there are many variables in making this decision, there are some key issues you need to consider. This should help you decide which direction to go. Here are four guidelines to consider.

  1. The age of your heating system – If your heating system is more than 15 years old, you should consider replacing it. The average life span of a heating oil system is about 20 years old.
  2. Repair vs. replacement costs – A new heating oil system is a significant investment for your home. But repair costs can be high, too – and with a repair, you have to consider the possibility of the problem happening again in the future. Here’s a rule of thumb: if your heating oil system repair exceeds 50% of replacement costs – especially on an older unit – you should probably replace it.
  3. System efficiency – Old heating systems burn more fuel because of their inefficiencies, which means you’ll get higher heating expenses. An old heating unit could have an Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) of less than 70%. A replacement model can be 85% efficient or higher.
  4. Safety–If your furnace has a cracked heat exchanger, it will release dangerous carbon monoxide into your home. If your heat exchanger is cracked, you should have the heating system replaced immediately. A cracked heat exchanger means the end for your furnace because it cannot be repaired.

Choosing the Right Heating Equipment

When discussing your replacement options with your heating oil equipment expert, you’ll most likely learn about the importance of proper sizing.

A Proper Installation Holds the Key to Performance

Once the right system is selected, your heating oil service expert will install it the right way. This requires skilled technicians with specialized training. The bottom line: installing a new heating system will increase energy efficiency and save you money, as long as the boiler or furnace is sized and installed correctly.

It’s always best to work with a full-service heating oil company, who can escort you through the process that results in an ideal home comfort solution. That’s because everyone on staff—from the equipment service manager to the technicians to the installation team—is a certified expert.

How You Benefit From a New Heating Oil System

You can expect to reduce your annual fuel expenses by 20% or more—depending on the age and efficiency of your current system—not to mention virtually eliminating high repair bills, with a replacement system.

A new heating oil system is also a green choice. Emissions from an old system can be significantly reduced by upgrading to a high-efficiency heating oil system. Today’s heating oil systems are efficient and their emissions are negligible. Advances include systems with reduced fuel-firing rates. Plus, today’s wide use of Bioheat® fuel in Maine is reducing emissions even further. Read more about Bioheat fuel.

Don’t wait until your heating system fails on the coldest day this coming winter! Start doing your homework now by contacting your full-service heating oil company.