A functioning HVAC unit is necessary to live in comfort in any home. Yours may be chugging away and making you doubt its ability to keep you warm in winter and cool in summer. Is it time to replace your HVAC unit? There is no single best time to replace an HVAC unit, but asking yourself these questions can help you decide whether you want to replace yours.
Is the cost of repairing it more than the cost of replacing it?
If your HVAC unit has broken down, you can choose to repair or replace it. If repairing your unit requires buying a long list of replacement parts and extensive labor, the cost may end up being comparable to or more than the cost of replacing it. In that case, you might as well buy a new unit that can provide you many more worry-free years. On the other hand, sometimes a minor adjustment or easy repair can give you several more years of service from your current HVAC unit. It’s worth getting a quote.
Is your current HVAC unit adequate?
Each HVAC unit is designed to heat and cool a certain number of square feet. In general, the unit needs a ton for each 500 square feet of area. For example, if your home is 2,000 square feet, your HVAC unit should be 4 tons. You probably need a new unit if you have noticed your unit does not seem to be able to heat up the house quite enough in winter or cool it down sufficiently in summer.
How much are you wasting on energy bills?
Running an air conditioner is not cheap. The cost skyrockets if your HVAC unit is inefficient due to wasting of energy. New models tend to be more efficient than models made before the early 1990s.
As you shop for a new unit, look for Energy Star labels. These indicate the machine is part of the government program to hold appliances to energy efficiency standards. In particular, look for the Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating, or SEER. A higher SEER indicates greater efficiency – and more cost-savings for you down the road. The initial cost of a more efficient HVAC unit is higher than for a less efficient one.