Don't Waste Your Money: How to avoid costly furnace repair bills

(Toledo News Now) - When it comes to expensive home repairs, nothing tops a problem with the furnace. When it goes out, a repair can cost from a few hundred dollars to thousands of dollars. But a small part doesn't have to result in a big repair bill.

Before winter arrives, many of us have a heating and air conditioning company inspect the system. Or we turn it on and find it's not working properly. Either way, you could be facing a bigger bill than you ever expected.

Toby Pawlaczsuk discovered his furnace and air conditioning would not turn on recently. So a serviceman came out, charged him $95 for the diagnostic visit and then gave him the bad news: The main control board was shot.

"They came back with a $600 cost. For a control board, not including service call, so altogether I am looking at $700 out of pocket," said Pawlaczsuk.

But he looked online and found his Goodman-Amana circuit board was selling new for as low as $69.

Pawlaczsuk says this failure was shortly after the evaporator went bad.

"My evaporator went out. It's a $400 part, but they wanted $1,700 to put it in," explained Pawlaczsuk.

It's a common complaint about furnace and air conditioning repair: high surcharges on parts if it's out of warranty.

Pawlaczsuk suggests that if this happens to you, conduct an online search for the part you need to see what it really costs. You may be able to talk them down, or if not, call another repair company.

That's what Pawlaczsuk did.

"I understand needing to make a profit, but that's a LOT of profit!" said Pawlaczsuk.

So the repair man wants a lot more money than you expected? It's best to say thank you and get a second opinion.

That way you don't waste your money.

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