I wrote this piece for 2theTop Design for their client Jewell Mechanical.
No one wants to spend their vacation money on a new AC unit, but it beats baking in your house all summer long. The good news is that buying a new HVAC system now will save you money in the long run. Immense advances in energy efficiency have taken place over the last 20 years.
New units use less Freon, which is expensive and being completely phased out. Also, repairs on newer systems cost less than repairs on older ones.
So, it isn’t all bad. With a new air conditioning unit, you can improve the overall comfort, healthfulness, durability and energy efficiency of your home. Still, replacing your air conditioner is a big investment and a major decision that you should not take lightly.
We’re here to help. We’ve compiled a list of things to think about when deciding to replace your AC unit.
DOES YOUR AC UNIT NEED TO BE REPLACED OR REPAIRED?
We’ve given you some maintenance tips in the past:
- How You Can Keep Your AC Running Efficiently
- Reasons Why Your AC Might Be Blowing Hot Air
- Air Conditioning Tips Tricks
Most AC issues are caused by clogged coils and dirty filters, but this time, you suspect there’s a bigger issue to blame.
Once you’ve gone through all the diagnostics yourself and have decided that you need a professional opinion, we’re happy to step in and provide you with one.
If you’re a returning customer, as per our Energy Savings Agreement, you are due two tune-ups each year. First time customers, your diagnostic fee will be waived with an approved repair.
Our first priority is to keep you comfortable all year long. As we all know, a home in Middle Tennessee without AC can get uncomfortable pretty quickly in the summer.
YOU SHOULD REPAIR YOUR AC UNIT IF:
- Under 12 Years Old
- Leaking Water
- Loose or Broken Ductwork
- Dirty Coils
- Broken Blower Motor
- Clogged Drain Line
- Electrical Problem
- Still Under Warranty
If there are multiple repair issues you might need to replace your unit.
YOU SHOULD REPLACE YOUR AC UNIT IF:
- Over 12 Years Old
- Compressor Problems
- Condenser Coils Issue
- Low SEER Rating
- Over or Under-Sized
- You Plan to Live in Your Residence for 20 More Year
- Heat Exchanger
- Condenser/Evaporator Coil
KEY FACTORS TO CONSIDER WHEN HIRING A CONTRACTOR TO REPLACE YOUR AC UNIT
So, your technician suggested that you should replace your HVAC system. Gearing up for this large and important purchase, we want you to consider a few factors.
Unlike replacing a washer, dryer or refrigerator, a new air conditioner will affect your entire house.
- Does your HVAC contractor understand building science and will he or she treat your problem using a systems approach? Our technicians are trained on the latest HVAC equipment, including systems from Rheem, American Standard, Mitsubishi and all other major HVAC manufacturers.
We understand that your AC is only one of many factors that help with the heating and cooling of your home. Insulation, air leakage, duct leakage, solar gain through windows, and radiant heat problems all affect the air quality in your home.
- How will the new air conditioner be sized? Systems, which are too small for their homes will require more energy to cool and heat their spaces resulting in large power/gas bills. Units that are oversized will cut-on and cool their spaces very quickly, but then cut-off and repeat the process again and again. This on-and-off power cycling will also result in a high power/gas bill.
Here you can find out more information on calculating the proper HVAC unit size for your home on our blog.
- Does your contractor test for duct-leakage?Most duct systems have leakage. A duct leakage test will determine how well or poorly your ducts work.
- Does the contractor assess the air-flow in the duct system and make recommendations for repairs? Many duct systems don’t move as much air as they should because their ducts are too small, kinked or too long.
In many homes around Nashville, the primary duct work is in an exposed or partially exposed crawl space, easily infiltrated by animals and the elements. Our HVAC contractors will measure the total external static pressure of your duct system and make sure it’s within the limits specified for the equipment we’re installing.
- HVAC Installation Checklist: No matter who you select for your HVAC installation, please make sure that they are following the HVAC Installation Checklist set up by the Air Conditioning Contractors of America Association.
Additionally, if you have a contractor come out and recommend something and you want a second opinion, we are happy to provide a second opinion free of charge.
You can trust that our experienced technicians will not just swap out your old equipment for new – we’ll take the time to get it right. After all, the most important day of your new unit’s life is the day it’s installed in your house.