When Should I Replace My HVAC Unit?
Should I repair my existing HVAC system or replace it? This is a very common question, and several factors should be considered when making this decision. One of the most important considerations is the actual age and lifespan of your current unit. The Department of Energy recommends homeowners replace their HVAC system every 10-15 years.
Your HVAC system requires regular maintenance to keep it running efficiently but regardless of the proactive measures you take to ensure the longest lifespan possible, there will come a time when repairs aren’t enough and a replacement will be needed.
A new HVAC system can be costly, but so can the ongoing use of an inefficient & unreliable unit. This guide should help you decide if it’s time to start thinking about "out with the old, and in with the new."
- Is your HVAC system more than 10 years old? – As mentioned earlier, the Department of Energy recommends the replacement of HVAC units that are more than 10-15 years old. Not only are they less efficient, A/C units over 10 years old probably use a refrigerant called R-22 which is outdated, harmful to the environment, and because manufacturing or importing it has become illegal in the United States, it’s much more difficult to get making it very expensive.
- Repairing costs more than half of replacing – You’ll have to crunch the numbers, but if repairs to a unit that is older than 10 years cost half or more than the cost of replacing with new, you’re better off starting from scratch. Then add the amount you’ll save on energy bills by installing a more efficient unit and you’ll see that replacement is the best option.
- Your electric bills are higher – If you open your energy bills and think they seem high, there’s a good chance that your HVAC unit is causing the increase. As your unit ages, its efficiency decreases and has to work harder to do its job. Regular maintenance can increase the lifespan of the unit but eventually it’s simply better to replace it than spend more and more money repairing it.
- You struggle with maintaining a comfortable temperature – If keeping the temperature consistent or comfortable is a problem it could mean that the system is just not able to keep up anymore. If you’ve replaced the thermostat, air filter, and have had the unit inspected but still have issues you probably need to start thinking about a replacement.
- Your home is dusty – A properly working HVAC system is designed to improve air quality so if excessive dust is showing up in your home and you’ve tried changing the filter, chances are the A/C system is no longer working to its full potential.
- Strange smells and sounds – If you detect any kind of unusual smell in your home it could be something as common as dust burning off, or something more serious like a component burning. Either way, turn the unit off immediately until you have it checked out. It’s always better to be safe than sorry. The same applies to odd sounds such as squealing or grinding. Have the system inspected immediately. Odd odors and sounds are very often associated with the beginning of the end of your unit’s lifespan so you’ll want to get a professional opinion.
If any of these signs are noticeable in your home it’s time to call Texas Ace Heating and Air for an inspection and recommendations. We’ve helped thousands of residents in the Dallas/Fort Worth area replace their HVAC unit with a system that fits their home and budget. Give us a call at 817-240-6701 or contact us and let’s see how we can help.