When problems start to arise with your HVAC unit, sometimes it can be hard to discern the best course of action. Should you throw in the towel with your old, broken down unit and upgrade to a newer model? Will your old unit go out completely on a sweltering hot or bitterly cold day? Or does your old unit still have some life left in it? Should you repair or replace your HVAC?
It’s important to remember that if they are properly maintained, HVAC units can last 15-20 years. However, there are many factors that can make a replacement the more cost effective option in the long run. At Freedom Air and Heat, we have repaired or replaced HVAC units countless times, and we are fully equipped to diagnose your unit.
Here are a few pointers to help you assess whether to repair or replace your HVAC unit by examining it for yourself.
Factors to Consider:
If your unit is over 15 years old, take that into account when you are assessing its overall value. Is it really worth it to pay for repairs on a unit that might be on its last leg anyway? If your HVAC is a “senior,” it might be most cost effective to go ahead and replace it than to attempt to repair it repeatedly.
Another point you should consider as your weigh your options is the price of repairs compared to the price of a brand-new unit. Typically, the price range for a new HVAC unit is between $1,000-$4,000. (For energy efficient products, the price may be closer to $3,000-$8,000). If the cost of repairs approaches or exceeds the cost of a new unit, replacement might be a better option. There is even a mathematical formula that HVAC technicians can use to determine the best deal.
Repair your HVAC if: (Cost of Repair) X (Age of Old Unit) < (Cost of New Unit)
Replace your HVAC if: (Cost of Repair) X (Age of Old Unit) > (Cost of New Unit)
Newer HVAC units are better optimized for maximum energy efficiency. If your electric bills are particularly high, it might be a good idea to upgrade to a certified Energy Star HVAC product. Even though you will have to pay for a new unit on the front end, you will save money over time on your monthly electric bills.
If your AC unit was manufactured any time before 2010, it might use a refrigerant product called R-22 or Freon. This refrigerant is being phased out of production because it negatively affects the environment and the ozone layer. As a result, the cost of R-22 has skyrocketed. If your AC has a refrigerant leak issue and needs to be refilled with more refrigerant, it can get expensive pretty fast. It might be worth it to consider upgrading to a unit that does not require R-22 at all.
In many cases, with regular maintenance and/or occasional repairs, you can enjoy an HVAC unit for well over a decade. But in some instances, upgrading to a new unit may benefit both your home comfort and your pocketbook. We hope these guidelines will help you make an informed decision about whether to repair or replace your HVAC unit.
Whether you need to repair or replace your HVAC unit, our NATE certified technicians can help. Call Freedom Air and Heat at 321-631-6886.