If your furnace breaks in the middle of winter, you have a few options. You can replace the heater right away, hunker down and wait until spring, or use heating alternatives to get you through the colder days. Here are some options and considerations to help you decide.
Immediate Heating Repair
One of the biggest arguments for considering your furnace break an emergency is that fixing it right away is important to your comfort. It's certainly much more convenient to simply get your furnace fixed rather than deal with finding an alternative heating method. And if you have small children or sick adults in your home, having a reliable heating system can be crucial. In these cases, calling in an emergency heating company is the best solution.
Wait it Out
Some people hold off on heating repair in the middle of winter because of surge pricing. Heating companies may need to pay their employees higher wages in the middle of winter in order to keep pace with the higher demand for workers. Some of that expense may be passed on to you as the consumer. If you shop around and look for reasonably priced heating companies in your area, you may be able to avoid surge pricing. If it's a big financial burden, bring out your sleeping bags and wool blankets.
Use Heating Alternatives
You may also want to consider alternative heating methods to hold you over. Space heaters are common options, especially if you only need to heat a few rooms at a time. Investing in space heaters may be a great idea anyway, so that you have backup heating sources in the future in case this heating emergency happens again. There are some even more creative heating sources, such as do-it-yourself heaters that use candles as a heat source.
Note: Home Precautions Are Needed
If you do attempt to ride out the long winter and wait to fix your heater, there are some home precautions that you must take to ensure that you don't end up doing more damage to your home. The main thing to worry about is your plumbing pipes; if they freeze, they may burst and create an expensive mess. Be sure that your pipes are insulated before you go without a heater. In short, while an immediate heating company repair is best if you can afford it, it can sometimes be possible to wait.