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Signs it’s Time to Replace Your Working AC Unit

A Helpful Guide from Your HVAC Technicians at Comfort Solutions 

When it comes to your air conditioner, one challenging decision you’ll have to make as a homeowner is when it’s time to replace your old system with a new one. While purchasing a new AC unit is a big investment, the costs associated with continuing to operate and repair an older and inefficient model can be just as high. Unless you’re a trained and experienced HVAC technician, it can be difficult to know whether a malfunctioning AC unit needs a simple repair or a more long-term solution. Fortunately, by paying attention to your older system and learning about the signs that it’s time to find a replacement, you can be better prepared to purchase your new AC unit before you desperately need it. 

If you think your air conditioner is nearing the end of its life, the experts at Comfort Solutions HVAC can help you determine next steps. Our trained and licensed professionals can find you the right air conditioner that not only suits your budget but addresses all your cooling needs. 

How to Determine When it’s Time to Replace Your AC Unit

Since your air conditioner is arguably one of the costlier investments you will make for your home, it’s only natural that you’ll want to get the most out of your existing unit before shopping for a replacement when the time comes. However, no matter how well you maintain your HVAC system, you will have to replace it eventually since older models can contribute to soaring energy bills and poor indoor air quality. 

Not sure when it’s time to replace your working AC unit? Here are a few important warning signs to look out for that can help you determine when your system needs to be replaced: 

  • Your System is Outdated: The Department of Energy typically advises the replacement of an HVAC unit 10 years after installation. Though you might be able to keep it running beyond that, many of the components will likely start to break down beyond this point. Furthermore, a lot of HVAC units that are more than 10 years old, use an outdated form of refrigerant called R-22. Not only is this chemical no longer used in modern AC units, but it is also harmful to the environment. Switching to a new unit will not only reduce your carbon footprint but also avoid the high maintenance costs that usually come with units that are past their lifespan. 
  • Repair Costs are Getting High: The rule of thumb we generally stick by is that if repairing an HVAC unit costs more than half of its value, it is no longer worth repairing. This is also because these larger maintenance jobs can be indications of greater issues with the unit. What this means is that repairs will not only cost more but probably be needed more frequently as well. Severe breakages, part replacements or other repair work at a certain point is not financially worth your while. Instead, we recommend putting that money towards a new, more efficient unit. 
  • Your House is Not Staying Cool: If you keep having to adjust your thermostat because the air conditioning is not keeping the house cool, it may well be an indication that the unit is no longer running as efficiently as it used to. While not always an indication of the need for a replacement, if the issue proves to be chronic, even though the unit is well maintained, it will likely need to be replaced. 
  • Electricity Bills are Steeper: The hot summer months can already be costly if you are regularly keeping your house cooled, but if you start to notice that electricity bills are getting steeper, without usage increasing, it might be a sign that something is wrong with your HVAC unit. As components in the unit begin to fail, they reduce its ability to run smoothly while also putting excess strain on its systems. These in turn increase power usage as the air conditioner struggles to maintain cool levels. If this issue proves to be systemic and a specialist is unable to fix it, then the unit will mostly likely have to be replaced in order to save you further expensive power bills.
  • Poor Air Quality and Dust: Poorly running HVAC units can be quite harmful to the air quality of a house, spreading dust and other particulates through the vents and rooms. Not only is this a cleaning nightmare, but it also can lead to health issues if it goes unchecked, particularly with young children and seniors. If you notice this problem and replacing the filter does not help, the issue is likely to do with the unit overall. In these cases, we usually recommend a replacement rather than repair.

If you have noticed any of these signs when it comes to the status of your existing air conditioner, it’s time to get in touch with the team at Comfort Solutions HVAC. We can assist you through the process of finding the perfect replacement for your old AC unit that works for both your home and your budget. Additionally, we always consider your health, lifestyle and future plans in order to determine the best HVAC system for you. Our goal is to provide homeowners with high-quality products and services at competitive prices, as well as offer free in-home estimates where one of our professionals will help you find the most suitable solution. 

Determine the right time to replace your existing AC unit with help from the professionals at Comfort Solutions HVAC. To book a consultation appointment, give us a call at 610-438-9300 or contact us online.

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