Cost and Comfort: Choosing Between Replace, Repair, and Renew for Heating and AC Systems | Minneapolis, MN

Breaking Through the Decision Process When Your System’s Not Up to Snuff Anymore

Are you not quite comfortable in the summer and a bit chilly in the winter? Let’s talk about several different ways to address that. At Blue Ox Heating & Air, we can help you choose what will work for you and your Minneapolis, MN home. A lot of people think that the two ways to make a change are bringing in a new HVAC system and enjoying both comfort and operating cost savings, or making targeted upgrades to solve specific problems. There’s one more you may not have considered: doing everything you can to restore the efficiency of your existing unit.


Keeping Maintenance Standards Up

Heating and AC repair technicians who visit to replace an AC compressor or furnace burner will often spend some time cleaning nearby parts of the equipment. This can increase the performance of the unit as a by-product of the visit. Efficiency has a lot to do with cleanliness. Incoming air filters often get blocked by dust, animal fur, and other airborne matter, slowing down the passage of air through the unit. Debris also travels through the system if not filtered out at the input — don’t forget to get regular duct cleanings to keep it from staying in there and creating an unhealthy environment.


Simple Renewal Strategies Can Regain Lost Performance

Maintenance and renewal of components to bring the system back closer to its original capacity can, according to some estimates, increase efficiency by up to 35 percent in older units. Our heating and AC repair techs can take care of it. With so many advances in technology in recent years, you may have better options. If you’ve had weather-related damage, debris from renovations, or other unusual degradation of your unit, though, renewal might be a good solution.


Retrofitting Older Systems for Renewed Efficiency

If your system is still working, but not working very well, you can give it a boost by just swapping out old, tired parts for new ones. Replacing fan equipment, vents, compressors and coolant, furnace nozzles, and related equipment, you can renew the existing system. Our heating and AC repair techs can work on your system which is in decline and bring key components back to the original specification, which may help your system be more effective.


Controller Upgrades

Older systems had a very simple approach to controlling how and when they supplied heating and cooling. Your repair technician can make a big difference simply by upgrading your thermostat to a smart one, for instance, or adding other intelligent control systems.



In Minneapolis, MN, winters put a strain on your heating equipment and summers can be hot. In addition to insulation in your home, HVAC-specific insulation strategies can help with heating and cooling efficiency. In particular, putting insulation around ducts inside the house and AC lines from outside can help considerably, along with insulation of heated water pipes for your hot water supply and hot water or steam-based heating.


Airflow Gets the Hot or Cold Air Where it Needs to Be

Make sure that the air flowing into your home from your HVAC system can be freely distributed throughout your rooms. If you have furniture in front of vents, or other obstructions, the effectiveness of your system is reduced. Check also for blockages on the air return vents which are often on the floor.


Regular Seasonal Maintenance

You should have a heating and AC repair technician visit to check and tune-up your system at the start and end of each heating and cooling season. Your system has done a lot of work, and routine maintenance tasks to keep the key heating and cooling equipment and air, water, or steam flow will help your system recover from inevitable wear and tear.


Air Filters

Basic air filtration for your heating and cooling system is actually more for the equipment than for you. It may not remove pollen, pet dander, and other small particles in your air, but it keeps your valuable equipment from being clogged and worn down by accumulations of dust, fibers, and other airborne debris. Have our heating and AC repair staff replace the filters and show you why. Simply having clogged filters can affect your airflow significantly and also degrade motor operation and fan efficiency.


Repair Could Be All You Need

Of course, if your system is damaged, HVAC repair is a helpful option to consider, especially for newer systems. Consider getting our heating and AC repair technicians out to fix issues like these:

  • Refrigerant Leak
  • Broken Condenser Coils
  • Broken Compressor Fan
  • Drainage Issues
  • System short-cycling, frequently turning on and off
  • Excessive noise
  • Unexpectedly high energy bills


Don’t forget to have the heating and AC repair tech do routine maintenance while out on the heating and AC repair visit, if needed. For other than minor repairs, we do recommend that you compare the cost with that of a new, highly-efficient system which could be to your financial advantage.


Replace and Reap the Rewards

Great efficiency gains in the last five years or so have made a new system so much better than it generally pays for itself in energy efficiency in a few years. Financial incentives from utility companies and government agencies can improve the financial picture still further. AC units ten years or older, and heating systems from ten to fifteen years old are reaching the end of their typical lives, also.


We Have Experts to Run the Numbers for You

In addition to our amazing group of heating and AC repair technicians here at Blue Ox Heating & Air, we have folks in our office who keep up-to-date on all the factors involved in making heating and AC financial decisions for our customers in the Minneapolis, MN area. Whether you want to run the numbers or get some maintenance and repair work done, give us a call at 952-208-4570.

Photo By at fizkes at Shutterstock