How to Determine if Its Time for an AC Repair or Replacement

When your air conditioner in Greater Richmond breaks down, it can be hard to know if it’s time for an AC repair, or if a replacement would be a greater option for the long run. The answer isn’t similar for every homeowner. E.g., a system that has been serviced regularly could be a better candidate for an AC repair because it will probably have a longer existence than another system that hasn’t been maintained. Many other influences should be thought about in addition to this. We’ve got some questions that can help guide you.

How old is your system and how often are you repairing it?

The age of your air conditioner is a large factor in your choice to order an AC repair or invest in a replacement. Dated systems usually don’t operate as well as they did when they were new—and definitely not as effectively as a new, energy-efficient model. Actually, you could decrease your energy consumption by more than you may think if you swap out your outdated system with a new, energy-efficient unit. Usually, this savings will support investment in a replacement system.

So how old is “too old”? That can vary based on your specific equipment and how well it’s been maintained, but Energy Star advises upgrading to an energy-efficient unit if your present-day central air conditioner is greater than 10 years old.

Outside your unit’s age, check out your AC repair history. If your system has broken down several times, it’s prone to stop working again—this situation can end up costing you more money in the future. When you consider possible rebates and enhanced efficiency, is a new system going to be more cost-effective in the future?

Many professionals suggest following “The $5,000” rule. Multiply the age of your unit by the cost of the AC repair. If it’s more than $5,000, replace the system. If it’s less, just get the repair.

Here are some other questions you should consider:

  • Is your house comfortable enough in the summer? If not, your system isn’t keeping up.
  • Are your energy bills going up without increased usage? This is a symptom that your air conditioner is failing.
  • Is your system properly sized? If your system is too small for your home, it can’t function properly. Just the same, if you’ve not long ago taken measures to make your home more energy efficient, your system can in fact be greater than you need to cool a very efficient home.

If you’re not sure if you need an AC repair or if it’s time to think about a replacement, Herman Allen Plumbing, Heating & Cooling can help! Our experts can help you establish how much life remains in your system and what the top option for your home and budget will be. Call us at 804-302-6657 to setup an appointment for us to visit you.

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