Home repairs are just part of homeownership. But knowing the signs when a home repair is looming can help you act before the problem becomes more serious. And understanding the potential cost of repairs can help you be prepared when the time comes. This article will help you to prepare for four of the most common home repairs.
Quick tip: If an item is nearing the end of its average lifespan, be extra vigilant for signs of failure. And if you need to make frequent repairs on a particular item, it may be time to replace it.
A note about prices: Costs are estimates only. Actual prices depend on many factors, including the specific repair, features of the replacement item, local service costs and more.
Average lifespan: 12-15 years1
Watch for: Leaky ductwork; uneven temperatures around your home; air not heating or cooling like it used to; higher utility costs without extra usage; system never seems to stop running
Repair costs: $75-$4,2002
Replacement costs: $3,000-$6,0002
23% of homeowners plan to upgrade their HVAC system in the next five years3
Average lifespan: 15-30 years (asphalt shingle), 20-50 years (metal), 30 years (wood), 50 years (clay or slate tile)4
Watch for: Obvious leaks; ceiling stains that indicate leaks; shingles that are missing, peeling away, cracked or torn; large amounts of grit in the gutters; pieces of shingle falling; sagging between rafters
Repair costs: $200-$7,0005
Replacement costs: $5,727-$12,4105
Average lifespan: 25-40 years (PVC), 70-80 years (copper), 80-100 years (brass, galvanized steel)6
Watch for: Leaky pipes or faucets; clogged or slow drains; wet spots on floors, walls or ceilings that indicate leaks from hidden pipes; low water pressure; discolored water; fixtures not working
Repair costs: $100-$7007
Replacement costs: up to $2,000 or more7
4. Water Heater
Average lifespan: 8-12 years (traditional), up to 20 years (tankless)8
Watch for: Cloudy, sandy or rusty water; lack of warm water or warm water doesn’t last as long; heater noises are louder; low water pressure; leaking around base of unit
Repair costs: $493-$6001,7
Replacement costs: $1,400 (traditional)2 to $5,000 (tankless)7