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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Should I Repair or Replace My HVAC System

If you’re reading this, chances are that the ever-dreaded day has come when something many of us depend on but is rarely at the forefront of our thoughts has given out. Your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems provide a comfortable environment, and they condition your home to help prevent damage to it. They also can prevent damage to your family’s health.


Typically when it stops in its tracks or malfunctions, your first step is to go to the directory and call a professional to come and inspect the system to remedy the problem. The solution oftentimes leads to a very major decision. Would it be more realistic to repair it, or is it best to replace your HVAC system? Some guidelines, like the ones on this website, can help you to make an educated choice and be content that you made the best decision.


When it’s Best to Repair


When it comes to the question of replacing or repairing your system, it can be rather difficult to know whether you will be able to make a sound decision because many factors will come into play. You will want to make sure that whatever choice you make will be the best option in the long run. Your unit may still be able to provide many years of service with a simple fix, and understanding some simple guidelines can help you to decide if you may be able to keep that emergency savings account in its place for a bit longer.


The Severity of The Problem


HVAC systems vary in complexity, and your air conditioner is the least complex unit. If the unit has a small part like a motor that needs replacing, it may be a more affordable remedy that will lead to more years with your current system. The more complex HVAC systems, such as a compressor, may cost a significantly large amount to fix. When complex air compressor parts must be repaired, it may be more practical to forgo repairs to the unit and consider a replacement. Of course, each situation is unique, and it may make better sense to you financially to make the needed repairs.


Once you are aware of the issue, the repair may be a simple do-it-yourself fix. Of course, be very careful because certain repairs are required to be done by a licensed professional. On the other hand, if you find yourself to be pretty handy, there are troubleshooting guides that may allow you to fix the issue yourself. A few examples of these are as follows:


  • Air conditioner does not blow cool air
  • Air conditioner breaker repeatedly trips
  • Air conditioner freezes up


Is a Warranty Available?


Most HVAC systems come with some type of manufacturer’s warranty, or you may have one available that was purchased from the company that installed the unit. This is worth taking the time to do your homework because it can save you hundreds, if not thousands of dollars. A transferable warranty may be included in the paperwork you received during the purchase of your home. Many manufacturers include a ten-year parts warranty. In many cases, HVAC equipment that is under ten-years of age should be repaired rather than replaced. It’s also important for you to remember that many newer units are built to last between ten to fifteen years.


When it’s Best to Replace


In the long run, replacing your HVAC equipment, including HVAC ductwork installation, may be more worthwhile. Older equipment is more likely to have frequent issues, and you don’t want to be constantly inconvenienced by needing to have repairs done. Repairs will likely be an option most of the time, but when is it time to throw in the towel? This is not the easiest choice to make, and it is impossible to know the future. Some practical factors, such as the condition of your HVAC ductwork installation, can help you determine the best decision to make before leaping into a major installation project.


How Much Will You Pay?


You may agree that it is better to pay $300 for something than forking out $3000 for another option. When it comes to the mechanics or behind-the-scenes makeup of your home, you’re not likely to be as satisfied with investing money into something that is not a major focal point that can be enjoyed by you or your guests. Likely, you would rather use that money to pay for that new television or kitchen remodel. If these things would need to be postponed due to replacing the air conditioner or furnace, it may be hard for you to stomach the expense. This will make it very tempting to choose the lower-priced option.


It is important to keep in mind what was previously mentioned. Constant repairs add up, and over time this can cost you significantly. Also, service and parts for older units can become more and more expensive because they are obsolete. There is a common formula that can help you determine if replacing your HVAC equipment is more realistic. The rule of thumb used by many contractors is to multiply the cost to repair your unit by its age. If the resulting number is higher than what it would cost to replace it, then your best bet is to start fresh with a new system.


How Old is the Equipment


Several things in our life will last longer if we maintain them well, but even with good maintenance habits, HVAC equipment has limits. Because of the average lifespan of up to fifteen years, it is not always a good idea to push your HVAC equipment beyond that. Older equipment tends to break down more often, and as mentioned previously, this can become timely and costly. However, other very important factors indicate that replacement is a better option than repairs.


HVAC equipment is constantly being built to run more efficiently and helps to reduce your energy bills. Energy costs continue to rise, so it may pay to have more efficient equipment. Also, old equipment may struggle to keep up due to wear and tear. It may be running more frequently and longer than it should be, resulting in higher utility costs. If you calculate the difference in efficiency over time, you may be pocketing a substantial chunk of change after replacing your HVAC system.


Now, What Will it Be?


Hopefully, you have found the solution for your HVAC woes, and you feel confident making an educated decision to repair or replace your equipment. You are now more knowledgeable and have viable factors to help you decide if your contractor is providing you with sound advice or if it may be necessary to get another opinion. It is advised to get multiple opinions when making a confusing and important decision like this. Ultimately, your situation is the best deciding factor, and if you trust your instinct, you can make the best decision for you and your household.