Furnace Blower Motor Replacement Cost 2019

Furnace blower motor replacement cost starts at about $115 for DIY repair for a small, singe-speed motor. When a professional repairs a large furnace with a powerful variable-speed blower motor, cost can exceed $1,200.

Most homeowners pay $350-$700 for professional furnace blower replacement.

When to replace vs repair a furnace with a bad blower motor is discussed below. The factors involved usually make the decision clear.

DIY? Diagnosing and replacing a furnace blower motor is a moderate to difficult job for do-it-yourself enthusiasts.

Could it Be Something Else?

If you hear the first motor start, called a draft inducer motor, but the furnace never fires up, it could be a bad ignitor.

If the blower motor hums or buzzes, it could be a capacitor. We recommend checking the guide called “Furnace Blower Motor Hums but Won’t Start: What’s the Problem?” before assuming the blower motor gone bad.

Furnace Blower Motor Replacement Cost Factors

These factors will determine the price of a new furnace blower motor.

Motor Performance: Blower motors come in single-speed models ($100-$315), multispeed models ($190-$600+) and variable-speed ($500-$1,000+). As you can tell, this is the most significant furnace blower cost factor.

Brand Name/OEM vs Universal Part: You’ll pay more for a name brand like Carrier, Lennox or Trane than you will for a generic blower motor with the same performance capabilities.

Is it Under Warranty: Most furnace warranties are 10 years. If the furnace is under warranty, you pay just the installation cost, not the part cost. Even that is a surprise to some homeowners – furnace warranties do not cover labor beyond the first year, if at all.

DIY or Pro Installation: It’s going to take a furnace repair technician between 45 minutes and 90 minutes to replace the motor, clean the fan, adjust the motor, test it and put the furnace back together. The biggest factor is how easy it is to get the assembly out. Some assemblies have the control board and other parts in front of them, so removing the assembly is more time-consuming and costly.

Remember, labor cost isn’t covered by most warranties. That means that even if the part is under warranty, you will save by DIY as long as you use the right motor and do the job properly. By the way, technicians charge a minimum fee of $75 to $150 that covers their first hour of labor. Labor rates are often double during non-business hours (evenings, and weekends, etc.).

ECM or PSC Motor: Electrically commutated motors (ECM) are energy-efficient, quieter and cost more. They are used on most two-stage and variable capacity furnaces. Permanent split capacitor motors (PSC) are less efficient and more affordable. They are usually single-speed or multispeed motors.

Heating Stages: Single-stage furnaces have single-speed ($) or multispeed motors ($$). Two-stage furnaces usually have multispeed ($$) or variable-speed ($$$) motors. Variable capacity furnaces always have variable-speed ($$$) blower motors.

Motor Size: Blower motors range in size from 1/6 horsepower to 1.0hp. Large motors cost more. Size is not a major factor when all else is equal.

Cost to Replace a Blower Motor

We’ve listed a few costs for motors and labor, but here is where we pull them all together.

Header

Low Cost

$100 - $325

Average Cost

$325 - $600

High Cost

$600 - $1,000+

Speeds

Single

Single or Multi

Multi or Variable

Manufacturer

Universal

Universal or Brand

Brand

DIY

Yes or No

Yes or No

No

Repair Time

Under an hour

1-2 hours

1-2 hours

Type

PSC

PSC or ECM

ECM

Heat Stages

One

One or Two

Two or Variable

Under Warranty

Yes

Yes

No

Size

1/6 to 1/2 hp

1/3 to 1 hp

1/2 to 1 hp

Repair vs Replace

As costs rise, it makes sense to consider furnace replacement rather than repairing it.

The more of the following factors are true of your furnace, the more it makes sense to buy a new furnace rather than spending money on the existing furnace.

The furnace is old – More than 10 years old if a cheap model and more than 15 years old if it is a quality furnace (See our New Furnace Replacement Cost & Best Furnace Brands Guide for details)

The repair cost is high – If the estimate is for $500 - $1000+, that money might be better spent on a new furnace with full warranty and the features, performance and efficiency you want.

You’ve already made costly repairs – Have you spent $500 or more on it?

You plan to stay awhile – The longer you intend to live in your current home, the more it makes sense to replace the furnace. Moving in a few years? Maybe you can nurse the furnace along, if repair costs don’t get too high.

It doesn’t keep your home comfortable – This could be because it is the wrong size, was improperly installed or is just a junky furnace. Who cares why? Today’s best furnaces offer amazing indoor climate comfort.

The furnace is inefficient – If you live in a cold climate and have an 80% efficient furnace, then you could save 10% to more than 15% by upgrading to a 90% to 97% furnace. Think the cost will be too high? There are affordable single-speed gas furnaces that deliver 96% efficiency!

You don’t have to buy a high-performance model to cut energy costs – but you certainly can, if premium climate control is a top priority. Our Furnace Buying Guide has comprehensive information about efficiency, performance, costs, quality and more.

Can you keep an old furnace going? Yes, almost indefinitely. In fact, that’s what a few unethical furnace repair companies want you to do.

They treat you well while telling you a $500 repair makes more sense than a $2,500 or $3,500 new furnace. Then, next year, they do the same thing. They’ll string a customer along, making yearly repairs, until finally saying, “OK, you really should get a new one now,” or the homeowner says, “Enough is enough.”

They make money off customers both ways – and this is a known strategy within the industry.

Diagnosing a Bad Furnace Blower Motor

Here are the basic steps to determining if your blower motor is bad.

1. Turn the switch on the furnace to the Off position (or you can turn off the circuit for the furnace in the electrical box)

2. Remove the access panels, so you can see the furnace blower fan. It might be behind a control board or other component, but you should be able to locate the fan wheel, also called a “squirrel cage” because it looks a little like the wheels squirrels and hamsters run on.

3. Find the motor side. Wires from the board should be leading to the motor. Cautiously move your hand toward the motor – You’re trying to feel whether it is hot. You might have to touch it, but use caution. If the motor is quite warm, even hot, it likely means that it has been getting power but not able to turn. The most common reason for this is that it is burned out and needs replacing.

4. You can also try to spin the fan wheel. Put on a glove since the fan blades are sharp. Reach around the other side. Grab the fan wheel and try to spin it. There should be an arrow on the housing that shows which way it turns. If it spins freely, then the motor might not be the issue. If it resists turning, this is another indication the fan motor has seized up and must be replaced.

5. Check your Capacitor: We mentioned the guide about the furnace motor humming, but the motor not running. It has step-by-step instructions plus a link to an instructional video. If you want to double-check that it isn’t simply a bad capacitor, see the Guide. A capacitor is a cheap fix compared with a blower.

This video shows more invasive approach that requires removing wires and using a multimeter to see if the control board is sending power to the blower motor. The reason to do this is to determine whether the control board is the issue.

Where to Buy a Blower Motor

Locally, you might have a parts store nearby that sells to the public. Many sell only to HVAC contractors. Take the old motor with you plus the make and model (or serial number) of the furnace.

Online, there are many stores that sell furnace parts. A search of “furnace blower motors” should bring up several options. Search for your motor by size, speeds and volts.

Comments on this entry are closed.

DMCA.com Protection Status