Because a new air conditioner is an investment, many people wait to replace their A/C until the entire system breaks down and is no longer repairable. However, this is rarely the best choice economically.
While air conditioners are built to last a substantial length of time, they aren't meant to last forever. Just like any other appliance, they need to be replaced. So, when should you replace yours? Here are some things to consider.
1. Your old unit is inefficient.
Even if your unit still operates, it may be costing you a substantial amount of money each month via your energy bill. Units today should have a SEER rating of 13 or higher. If yours is lower than 13, you will likely benefit from replacing the unit.
2. Your unit is old.
Air conditioners should generally be replaced every 10 years or so. If yours is well-maintained, it may last a bit longer. As a general rule of thumb frequent repairs are a sign it's time for a new unit.
3. Your repairs are expensive.
Just like any appliance, if the repairs cost almost as much as a new unit, it's a good idea to replace. Some repairs can cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars. In that situation, many experts will recommend a unit replacement.
4. Your unit uses old freon.
In the past, air conditioners used R22 freon. Many older units still use this type of freon, but government legislation requires new units to use a different type of refrigerant called R410A. If your unit needs to be charged with freon, you should consider upgrading because R22 costs are much higher than they used to be, and it's getting harder and harder to find this type of refrigerant.
How much does a new air conditioner cost?
The cost of a new A/C will vary based on many factors, including the size of your home, the type and brand of unit you select, and the labor involved. In general, though, you can expect to pay between $3,000 and $7,000. The current national average is $5,413. However, don't let those numbers scare you; your estimate may be much lower, and most homeowners save money in the long run, thanks to fewer repairs and a lower energy bill each month.
Whether you're worried your A/C is on the fritz or you would just like an upgrade, there are several good reasons to consider replacing your unit. If you need an estimate or have additional questions about your system, please contact Nice Home Services for a free consultation.