Our air conditioner has been a faithful guardian against blistering summers and suffocating humidity. However, even the most reliable AC units can start developing problems over time.
It’s common for air conditions to show signs of aging and stress, especially if they’re 10 years old or more. Most problems get resolved by quick repairs, but these repairs can start taking a toll on your pocket in some cases. On such occasions, owners have to decide whether it’s better to go for AC repair vs. replacement. Here are some factors that can help you decide.
WHEN IS AC REPAIR BETTER?
It’s easy to lose track of things when you face issues with your AC unit. However, most problems in AC units are repairable and only need minor adjustments. For example, an issue with your AC’s airflow can get fixed by trivial things such as regular cleaning of air filters. Even damaged ductwork is not something an experienced AC service can’t solve.
Still, AC repairs can require more than changing clogged filters in your air condition unit. Sometimes, these repairs can also have high costs. Failed fan motors and worn-out compressor can have their fair share of expenses.
Yet, these repairs will not be as near as expensive as buying an entire AC for replacement. A recent survey found that homeowners pay between $3,709 to $7,129 to purchase and install new AC units.
A good measure of knowing how much repair cost is too much is the 50% rule. If the repair costs of the AC unit are 50% or lower than the original price, then it’s better to repair the unit.
WHEN IS AC REPLACEMENT BETTER?
Sometimes there’s no chance of avoiding an AC replacement. This is common in units that have exceeded their life expectancy and are decades years old. Once an AC unit is old, it isn’t easy to find the repair parts for the unit.
Along with compatible parts, working out a long-lasting repair is difficult in AC units that have lived past their primes. Following are some of the factors that can help you decide whether it’s time to replace your AC unit.
As a general rule, when repair costs exceed more than half of the unit's original price, it's better to have a new system.
The emergence of frequent repairs is a clear sign that you should replace the AC unit. (It can also happen if you're relying on unprofessional AC repair service)
If you’re looking to cut out the cost of your energy bills, replacing an old unit is better. New units are good at conserving energy.
A decline in overall performance is a clear indicator that the system is ready for retirement. This is especially likely if repairs can't fix this issue.