At what point do you decide to repair vs replace?


Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 5, 2017
Oil City PA
My 15? 20? More? Year old Hayward H150 millivolt heater (I got it used from someone who got it used from someone) wouldn’t light this week. Narrowed it down to (I think) the gas valve. Have in laws and family coming over and no one had one in stock, and it’s, well.....Not exactly the cheapest part in the heater to replace. At what point do you just replace equipment instead of repairing? I made my decision already, just curious about what others would have done


TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 6, 2010
San Dimas, CA (LA County)
My considerations:
1) The part cost more than 50% of a whole new unit
2) Parts start to become widely unavailable. I'be always lived in large urban areas (SF Bay Area, Greater Los Angeles) and worked as a mechanic. If I couldn't get my hands on some car part within two days, the car in question belonged in a museum, not on the road. I think that mindset has carried over into all areas.
3) Things are rotted and rusted so bad that replacing the part means breaking others inadvertently.

Just from the unknown age and the rest of your tale, I suspect I'd opt for replacement.


TFP Expert
In The Industry
Jul 6, 2011
You are honestly better off replacing the entire unit instead of putting any money in that old unit. Plus on top of it, since it's a MV unit, you are burning fuel even when you aren't using it. So I would recommend that you finally ditch it and get upgraded to unit with a digital display and a spark ignition.


Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 5, 2017
Oil City PA
The new gas valve and some associated parts I’d need (new thermocouple, etc) was going to be in the area of $400, but it wasn’t in stock.

Guy tells me this while I’m standing in front of the sign advertising Pentair Mastertemp 125s on sale for $999.

I say, I’ll take it!”
Pool store guy: “Ok, I’ll just need to get some info from you and you’ll need to pay for it now for us to order it, should be here on Wednesday or Thursday “

Me: “Oh no no no no no, I won’t take that, I’ll take THAT (points to sign)

PSG: “Good call.”


Shes been hooked up and running since 330 this afternoon.


Well-known member
Jul 29, 2014
Independence, KY
First, time to upgrade yoru signature with the new equipment.

Second, as for when to repair versus replace, I have a 50% rule, but slightly different thatn Richards. I agree that a part that is 50% spells time to replace. But I also factor in my time. I assume my time is worth that of a good handyman, so $50 per hour. So if messing around with a repair is going to take 4 hours, I add $200 to the cost of the repair and then determine. Its not that I am lazy, I just have a virtually endless list of things to do, so I try to assign some value to my own work. I agree with Richard about part availability, and adjust accordingly. As soon as I sense something has been discontinued and parts will be harder to come by, I reduce my target from 50% down to 25% to make my determination.