Quoted from s1500:
I'll admit, I did some roof work on my garage with a few people to save quite a bit of $. Even rebuilt a car transmission one winter. But there's no way I'm going to trust myself with installing a furnace. I just don't want to risk blowing up the house.
Furnace is easy.
I'm the same way. Less you spend on repairs, the more you have for toys, or whatever.
Pinion bearing went out on the truck, quoted $2k, screw that. Google the problem, find several good YouTube videos and well documented procedures for my exact axle, plus the lists of required parts, tools and equipment. Spent $2k on tools instead. Put in a better, stronger aftermarket posi while at it. It's been running fine for 6 years now. And I have the tools to do more axles, and more importantly, the experience and pride of defeating that problem. Same for engines, transmissions, plumbing, electrical, everything. Very few jobs will I pay for as long as I'm healthy enough to do it.
As for the furnace, the neighbors thought I had issues when they saw me welding on the furnace in the driveway mid October. That was about 8 years ago. I didn't like where the builder put it, so redid the filter box, and patched some new metal in. Took it all apart and inspected the heat exchangers, fixed some leaky gaskets. Flipped the furnace 180 degrees, moved it to a new location and moved all the return plenums in the basement so I could get the home theater room just the way I wanted and without a furnace in the middle of it. All the other utilities were spread around the basement like a blind man designed it, such a poor usage of space. I moved everything, water heater, furnace, water softener, pressure tank, etc. Too bad I sold that house and now get to do it all over again.
No disrespect to the skilled trades guys, but I'm so grateful for the internet. We really are spoiled nowadays. All it takes is a few good documented repairs and most anyone can save tons of money. We will put a new furnace and AC in this house come spring, the old one is a mess. The previous homeowner left no manuals for the furnace. That stupid draft inducer sounded like a cat suspended over a deep fryer when I kicked it on this season. No way something making that much noise will keep working until spring. Look up the part number on the inducer, $480.00 plus shipping. HELL NO!
It took several days of searching the web to find the right furnace, but one person did the job and posted the OEM part number for his inducer, $99.95 shipped from Amazon. Dimensions were similar, the configuration looked correct, so I ordered one. It is the same exact part, just a different color. It took 10 minutes to swap it, most of that was for splicing the wires. The dude that posted his repair, was originally quoted $1150.00 for that job.
So please, when you defeat a problem such as this, post your results for others to follow!