If your air conditioner is giving you problems, it’s probably safe to assume that you’d rather repair it than replace the entire thing. HVAC systems, after all, are enormous and deeply entrenched into your home. Why replace it if you can get the same results by simply shelling out the money for a repair?
Unfortunately, there are occasions where repair just isn’t practical. An air conditioning system can reach the point where its negatives outweigh the positives, and at this point, it’s time to consider AC replacement. This isn’t an easy decision to make because of the costs involved, but sometimes it’s for the better — especially if you live within our service area, enduring the hot Florida heat.
You shouldn’t wait to have a functional air conditioning system, but it can also be hard knowing when it’s time for replacement. As air conditioning experts, we’re here to help. Here are a few indicators that it’s time for air conditioning replacement:
If the Cost of Repairs Exceed the Cost of Replacement
While repairs are usually far more cost-effective than full-on air conditioning replacement, there are certain conditions where they can actually be more expensive. Your air conditioning system is connected to a vast network of ducts throughout your home, and it also has a complex system of inner workings. Some of these parts are relatively painless to install and replace — others cost a pretty penny. In some rare cases, the cost of air conditioner repair can sour into the quadruple digits, and at that point it’s definitely worth asking if your money would be better spent on a new system entirely.
Refrigerant leaks, compressor failure, and condenser breakdowns are all examples of costly air conditioning repairs. Just a single one of these repairs will be fairly costly, and it’s even worse if you’re dealing with multiple at the same time. If you’re unsure how much air conditioner repair will cost you, we offer free consultations at Benjamin Brothers. Don’t be afraid to ask!
If Repairs Are Providing Diminishing Returns
Keep in mind that the cost of AC repair doesn’t necessarily need to exceed the cost of replacement for the latter to be a more viable option. In some cases, AC replacement is more expensive, but it’s still the better option because the value far exceeds the benefit of repairs.
If, hypothetically, your air conditioner system had a hefty $2,000 repair bill, you have to ask yourself what you’re getting for that price. Do you have reasons to believe that your HVAC system will live a long and prosperous life for years to come? Is it a one-and-done problem, or is it symptomatic of other issues in your air conditioner?
These questions are especially prudent if you can get a brand new system installed for $3,000 – $4,000. If your system is on its last legs and likely to continue throwing problems at you, it’s probably worth shelling out the extra couple grand to replace the system entirely. Do that, and you have a brand new HVAC that will run smoothly and effortlessly — likely reducing your energy bills at the same time. If you’re unsure about the longevity of your current system, our team of experts at Benjamin Brothers will gladly help you determine whether repair or replacement is more viable.
If You Just Can’t Get Comfortable
Want to know a sad truth? Some homes just aren’t installed with the right system from the get-go, so it’s possible that you’ve been doomed to discomfort in your house since the beginning. But even if your HVAC system was once a star performer, old and outdated systems can begin to show their age. When you keep a machine running for years and years, it’ll start to wear down eventually, even if it’s maintained pretty well. After a decade of service, even well-maintained AC systems will start to choke.
So ask yourself: are you comfortable at home? How often are you consciously thinking about the temperature of your home? Do you feel like you just don’t get enough cool air circulating through your home no matter how hard you try? Do you have trouble sleeping at night, constantly having to surround yourself with fans? Have you been employing old-fashioned strategies such as freezing your bedsheets? If any of these things are true, don’t hesitate to contact us, because it’s clear your air conditioner isn’t doing its job.
Unfortunately, some systems that are in perfect working order just can’t work hard enough to supply your home with as much cool air as it needs. Sometimes it’s due to age, and sometimes homes just never had a good HVAC system to begin with. But nevertheless, if the problem is beyond repair, put an end to your suffering and contact us for AC replacement services!
If Your Air Conditioner Is At the End of Its Lifespan
A few of the causes we’ve already listed are symptoms of this bigger problem, so it’s important enough to get its own section. The simple fact behind air conditioners is that they have a lifespan, and after so many years of dedicated service, the time must come where they eventually have to give up the ghost.
As a general rule of thumb, air conditioners have an average lifespan of 15-20 years. There are exceptions to this rule — some of them croak earlier, while other miracle machines might go three decades strong. But here’s the bottom line: if your air conditioner has passed that 15-year mark, all bets are off. Don’t be surprised if your system starts failing more often, or if your home isn’t quite as cozy as it once was. Don’t be shocked when your HVAC runs loudly, or if you start noticing a deteriorating air quality. Your system is probably trying the hardest it can, but there’s only so much it can do in its frail, advanced age.
This is where the aforementioned point of diminishing returns comes into play. If a two-year-old AC system has an unexpected breakdown, you can be reasonably confident that it still has a long life ahead of it so long as you fix the problem. But a 20-year-old unit? Maybe it’s time to let it go, because those problems might just end up coming back.
If Your Air Conditioner Has a Low SEER Rating
We don’t want to get too technical with this point, because complicated HVAC jargon isn’t really fun for anyone to read, but it suffices to say that there’s a handy-dandy number that’s associated with your air conditioning system, and it’s called a SEER rating. In very loose terms, the SEER rating is the ratio of cooling output in a typical cooling season, divided by the energy it consumes in Watt-Hours. In other words, it describes the efficiency of your HVAC.
As a homeowner, the main thing you need to know about SEER ratings is that higher is better than lower. Old AC systems have SEER ratings in the 8-13 range, and these systems no longer run as efficiently as the industry standard. You’ll want a system that’s rated at 14 at least, but you’ll benefit more from going higher than that.
One note about SEER ratings is that it’s prudent to ask AC professionals which number is ideal for your home. Depending on the size of your home and HVAC system, it’s possible to experience diminishing returns at exceedingly high SEER ratings. So even though higher ratings are better than lower ones, that doesn’t mean you need to shoot for the sky and install a 21 SEER system. But above all else, be sure to ask us if you’re unsure!
Air Conditioning Repair and Replacement in Pasco County
All the points on this list are important to consider if you’re thinking about replacing your air conditioner, but the biggest one is this: always consult with a professional before you install a new system! You’re not trained in the ways of HVAC, and if you solely work from online guides and Youtube videos, you could easily make suboptimal decisions for your home.
At Benjamin Brothers, we put the needs of our clients above everything else. That is what has allowed us to thrive in Pasco County and other surrounding regions in Florida for so many years; when you work with us, we put your needs first. That means we won’t arbitrarily try to sell you the most expensive systems just because we’d make a quick buck — we’re here to help, and we will take great care in diagnosing your system’s problems and recommending ideal solutions.
We provide air conditioning repair and replacement for both residential and commercial clients. Do you need a reliable AC system to escape from the hot Florida sun? Contact us today.