The Holidays Were Warm Until Our Furnace Stopped Working
Let’s face it, the holidays are tough. Especially for parents of young children. Every year, we test our mental breaking points running around trying to make sure we check every box on our kid’s holiday wish list. There’s the decorations, the gift wrapping, work parties, visiting Santa, and in-laws coming into town just to name a few. It’s overwhelming. As a parent, it is as if you take off an entire month of devoting just an ounce of energy towards yourself.
However, in the end, we know it is well worth it when you see the look on your children's faces when they first see those presents under the tree on Christmas morning. It is as if time freezes for a brief moment as you subconsciously give yourself a little pat on the back. You did it. Job well done. Then our furnace stopped working.
Your Furnace Not Working On Christmas Day?
It was like a punch to the gut. When I noticed it started feeling chilly inside, I went to check the thermostat. The moment I realized we had the temperature set at 72 degrees and the actual temperature was 64, my stomach dropped. It was as if the world was working against me.
I noticed my furnace not turning on even after switching the fan settings from “Auto” to “On”. The next 15 minutes consisted of me frantically pacing back and forth from the thermostat to the basement where my furnace was located. I went from preparing brunch to a certified HVAC contractor in about a ten-minute span. Googling pretty much every way to fix furnace problems. It became very apparent I was in a tough spot when every article I read ended with “Call a professional.”
Good Luck Finding Affordable Furnace Repair On Christmas Day
After roughly 40 minutes of researching DIY hacks for fixing home furnaces, it became obvious that I did in fact need to call a professional heating and cooling company, but also knew I’d probably have to wait until the next day. But still, I made a couple of calls just to test my luck.
Every HVAC company was either closed or required after-hour diagnostic fees. Which I get. It is Christmas after all. My husband offered to call a buddy of his who use to be an HVAC contractor. He had us check our furnace filter and thermostat, but explained that without being able to open it up, he couldn’t really help us. That was when we decided we should just stick it out until the next day.
Who Would Have Thought Furnace Problems Could Bring A Family Closer?
That night, my husband made a fire in our fireplace and we all gathered in our front room and watched Christmas movies. I have to say, it was really cute. The combination of the fire, the lit tree, and all five of us spending time together really warmed my heart. It was one of the moments where you realize what is most important. At that moment, we had each other and that was all we needed. The kids thought it was really cool, but were somewhat concerned about the fire in the event that Santa tried to come back down the chimney. I ensured them he wouldn’t be coming back for another 364 days. Despite our furnace not working on Christmas, everything felt right.
More Than A Simple Furnace Repair
I had taken off work the day after Christmas and called a heating and cooling company first thing in the morning. The technician was there within hours and was extremely friendly. After looking at my furnace for about 45 minutes to an hour, he came back upstairs with the diagnosis. We needed a new blower motor. He went over costs and explained that because my heating and cooling system is over 15 years old, it might make sense to consider replacing it rather than forking out money to repair it. My first thought was “Could this have happened on the worst day of the year?” Literally, the day after my kids opened over $1,000 in presents, I’m now faced with spending thousands on a new furnace.
Shopping Heating and Cooling Systems
Everything the technician explained to me made sense. If the repair was going to cost X amount of dollars, it might make sense to replace it rather than shell out even more in repairs over the next couple of years. After talking over the phone with my husband, we both came to the consensus that we should at least consider replacing the furnace before we decide to commit to the repair. It was at that point I asked for pricing. The technician asked me a variety of different questions such as:
- How long we planned on living in our home?
- Approximately how much our electric and gas bills were during hot and cold months?
- Are technological perks, such as wifi thermostats important to us?
He then made a quick call back to his office to relay the information, while letting me know that it would only be a matter of minutes before he had a proposal for us.
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Deciding On the Best HVAC System
About ten minutes later, I received the proposal via email. The technician and I sat down and went over it on my laptop. He provided us with pricing on four different heating and cooling systems. One of the options was just to replace the furnace while the other was for both the furnace and AC unit. The proposal was pretty straightforward. The higher-priced options contained much more components such as a whole-house humidifier and an air cleaner they offered called the air scrubber. The technician explained the advantages of these add-ons.
One of the major things that struck a chord with me was how this air scrubber helped reduce airborne contaminants. With young kids in the house, I thought this might be something worth considering. He also talked with me about how high-efficiency systems make more sense for a home like ours because it is approximately 2,800 square feet. That the savings we would receive in reduced energy bills would help offset any extra costs for the high-efficiency system.
The Financing Was Important To Us
After looking over the proposal, the technician then went over the different financing options they offered. One of the most important factors to us was how much would this new heating and cooling system cost us out of pocket. Because we had just spent so much money during the holiday season, I didn’t exactly budget for this. So when he told me they offered 0% financing for the first 18 months, it made the idea of a new heating and cooling system much more realistic. That gave us plenty of time to pay it off without having to worry about any interest fees.
Fast Turnaround On The Installation
After discussing the financing, I decided to pull the trigger on the new HVAC system. I went with the option that included both the humidifier and the air cleaner. They scheduled the installation for the very next day and told us we would be up and running within 24 hours.
My Overall Experience
From beginning to end, the overall experience was much more seamless than I had originally imagined. The technician was incredibly friendly and personable. I never felt like I was being pressured into buying something, and felt like I was in control of the decision the entire time. It was especially nice having a detailed proposal with multiple options to choose from. I felt the technician went out of his way to do everything he could to make this process as easy as possible for us.
From the moment I found out my furnace stopped working to the time of the new system being installed was only a couple of days, and am completely happy with how everything worked out. While a new heating and cooling system was not exactly the family Christmas present I was expecting, it is somewhat satisfying knowing my family will be comfortable inside our home for the foreseeable future.