Upgrade Your HVAC System

How to Decide Whether to Repair or Replace Your AC

July 26, 2016

If the air conditioning unit in your Crystal River, Florida, home is on the fritz, you may have to choose between repairing or replacing it. To help you make the decision, here are four key things to consider so that you end up with an AC that meets your needs.

AC Unit Age

When deciding whether to repair or replace your air conditioning unit, the first consideration should be its age. Is the AC unit two years old? Ten years old? Twenty years old? Generally, AC units that are more than 10 years old should be replaced with newer, more efficient models. The reason? Older units tend to run much less efficiently and often have lower Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratios (SEER) than newer models. For example, the standard efficiency rating in 2006 was 10 SEER; today it is 13 SEER. If your air conditioner was manufactured in 2006 or earlier, it may not meet minimum federal standards and could be costing you extra money.

If that’s not enough to help you decide, you can also rely on the 5,000 rule. This rule dictates that if the age of the AC unit multiplied by the cost to repair it equals more than $5,000, the unit should be replaced. If it equals less, the unit should be repaired.

AC Unit Repairs

Air conditioner units that require frequent repairs could signal that it’s time for a replacement. If your AC unit is constantly breaking down, never cooling the home properly, and always operating loudly, you should definitely consider replacing the unit. You should also consider replacing the unit if important components like the compressor or condenser fail.

Keep in mind: air conditioners can function well just by having preventative maintenance done regularly by a professional. If your AC unit requires minor repairs now and then, this could be normal. Consult with your HVAC technician if you’re unsure.

AC Unit Efficiency

If your AC unit is ten years old or more, runs continuously, doesn’t cool your home properly, and causes your energy bills to be higher than they should be, you probably have an inefficient unit. If this is your problem, consider replacing it. Although replacement costs can be high, newer AC units can save you about $200 per year on energy costs. Plus, new units also have high-efficiency features like smart thermostat compatibility, dehumidifiers, variable speed motors, and scroll technology.

If you are still not ready to part with your old air conditioning unit, there are some add-ons that you can install to improve its efficiency:

Programmable thermostats: improve temperature control for more efficient system operation.

Dehumidifiers: keep your home cool and comfortable, and help to improve your AC’s cooling efficiency.

AC Unit Recommendations

Always consult with a trusted HVAC contractor to determine whether your AC unit can be repaired or if it should be replaced. Depending on the issue, the technician may be able to fix it and save you from having to install a new unit. However, if the problem is beyond fixing, costs too much to be repaired, or the unit is too old or inefficient, replacement could be your only option.

Your trusted HVAC professional has years of experience working with AC units and can take factors like unit size, efficiency, and operation into consideration when making suggestions. HVAC techs can also perform home energy assessments to identify energy leaks and determine the efficiency of your cooling system.

If you decide to replace your AC unit , our technicians’ expertise will be crucial. After all, improper installation can reduce system efficiency and even reduce the life of the unit.

Making the decision to repair or replace your air conditioning unit can be tough. But by considering the unit’s age, repair history, and efficiency, as well as professional recommendations, you can have more confidence in your decision. If you need help with selecting the right AC for your home or with specific AC services throughout this process, don’t hesitate to contact Sun Kool Air Conditioning in Ocala at 877-962-2120.

Image provided by Shutterstock

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