Buying a new home is exciting! It’s one of the biggest purchases you’ll ever make. For that reason, it’s important to make sure you know exactly what you’re getting.
Picture this. You’ve done a walk through, submitted an offer, and now you’re waiting for your home inspection results to make sure everything is up to par. The inspector confirms that the heating and air conditioning works, and doesn’t look any further into the HVAC. Everything looks good, and you complete your home’s sale. Shortly after you move in, the furnace breaks down… and you realize the heating system is almost 30 years old! It’s run down, and definitely out of warranty. Now, you’re looking at a several thousand dollar replacement job.
A professional HVAC inspection could have saved you from this headache! Here are 3 reasons why you should have a separate HVAC inspection done before you close on a new home.
1. Home Inspections Usually Cover the Bare Minimum
A home inspector’s primary goal is to evaluate a home from top to bottom for safety hazards. They visually inspect the structure and other components of a home. Then, they compile their findings in a written report and highlight any problem areas. The problem is that most home inspectors aren’t HVAC technicians. As long as the system runs and blows hot and cold air, then it meets their standards for being in “good working condition.” This isn’t necessarily true!
In fact, according to the standards outlined by the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors inspectors aren’t required to inspect fuel tanks, ignite pilot lights, or do a great number of other important heating checks. When it comes to cooling, they also don’t need to “examine electrical current, coolant fluids or gases, or coolant leakage.” Seems like some pretty important stuff to check, right?? A professional HVAC inspector will look at all of this and more, and give you a detailed report on the condition of a home’s system. This way, you know exactly what you’re getting and can request repairs before you close on a home.
2. Functional Doesn’t Mean Efficient, or Effective.
Just because a system runs doesn’t mean it runs well. Old or poorly maintained equipment, leaky ductwork, and other common issues can lower efficiency and raise your energy bills. On average, heating and cooling account for 42% of your annual energy costs. An HVAC professional can locate current problems, highlight potential future issues, and give recommendations on pre-closing repairs you should request.
Efficiency and effectiveness impact more than just your power bill. We’ve talked before about How to Tell if Your HVAC System is Running Efficiently. Some of the side effects of inefficient or ineffective HVAC include uneven heating, inaccurate temperatures, and too much or too little humidity in your home. Humidity that’s too high can promote mold and mildew growth. Of course, mold and mildew can be a health hazard, with impacts ranging from allergy-like symptoms to more serious medical concerns. It’s easy to see why it’s so important that your HVAC doesn’t just run, but runs well.
3. HVAC Repairs and Replacements can get Costly
Your HVAC system is probably the most expensive appliance in your home, even if you have a fancy smart fridge! The average cost to replace an HVAC system is about $8,500. In comparison, the average cost of an HVAC inspection is $300. Spending a little up front on an HVAC inspection is much cheaper than having to deal with a big unforeseen expense later on!
Even if you don’t need a full replacement, it’s a good idea to understand the potential cost of repairs. Your HVAC inspection technician should give you a list of their recommended repairs or upgrades. You can then ask your technician or a local HVAC company for a cost estimate to get those recommendations completed. This way, you know exactly what kind of costs are coming along with your new home. It also provides you leverage to ask the home seller to make repairs, or to negotiate money back upon closing so you can make those repairs and upgrades yourself.
Need help finding a professional HVAC inspector? Texas Ace Heating & Air happily provides HVAC inspections to customers all around the Dallas/Fort Worth area! Contact us online to schedule an appointment with one of our rockstar HVAC technicians, or give us a call any time at 817-240-6701.