With proper maintenance, your air conditioner can work for 15 years or longer. But even the best maintained air conditioner will need to be replaced at some point.
When you’re starting to plan for air conditioning installation in West Columbia, we realize that the expense tops your list of questions. The bright side is that getting a new air conditioner may be more reasonable than you think it is, because of rebates, our special offers and financing for qualified customers. You’ll also enjoy improved energy efficiency, which will likely pay off over time through lower electricity bills.
Here’s what to expect when you’re replacing your air conditioner.
When to Replace Your Air Conditioner
Knowing when to repair or replace your air conditioner might be tricky. Here’s what our professionals suggest.
- Your air conditioner is more than 10 years old. While some may work longer, the majority of air conditioners last for around 15 years with routine maintenance. We suggest planning for air conditioning replacement around the 10-year point. Even if you get a new one when it’s only a decade old, the U.S. Department of Energy says this swap could save you 20-40% on cooling costs.
- You’ve skipped annual maintenance for a long time. Much like a car, you cooling system requires regular air conditioning maintenance. Overlooking this important service can lead to diminished efficiency, more frequent repairs and even a reduced life span.
- Your air conditioner has to have frequent or pricey repairs. Needing air conditioning repair is often the result of skipping service. But as your air conditioner ages, it’s more likely to suffer a major problem. When repairs are greater than half the cost of a new air conditioner, you should get a new one.
- Your residence is uncomfortable. If your house feels too sticky or you’re experiencing hot and cold spots in given spaces, your air conditioner may be having a hard time keeping up. This is a hint you need to replace it.
- Your cooling bills are costly. Your air conditioner loses efficiency as it becomes older. As a result, it could need to run more frequently or longer to keep your home at your desired temp. Newer air conditioners have the latest energy-efficient technology to keep your home comfortable and cooling bills reasonable.
- Your air conditioner uses R-22 refrigerant. If your air conditioner was installed before 2010, there’s a good chance it uses Freon. Also called R-22, this refrigerant is no longer being produced due to its bad effects on the environment. You can carry on with using your air conditioner, but if it were to experience a refrigerant leak, repairing that would be extraordinarly expensive. This is due to the fact R-22 is only available in limited, recycled quantities.
- Your air conditioner is less than 10 years old. If your air conditioner is newer, it’s smartest to repair it.
- Repairs are infrequent or reasonable. The wisest way to stop unanticipated repairs is to have regular service scheduled. But when repairs are only needed every so often or are reasonable, repair your air conditioner.
- Your air conditioner is covered by a warranty. Most air conditioners are accompanied by a 5- to 10-year limited warranty that often covers the compressor. Your exact warranty length is determined by your manufacturer, but it gives valuable protection in the event of a huge failure. If your air conditioner is under warranty, we recommend fixing it.
Air Conditioner Cost
Most homeowners spend around $4,631 on a new air conditioner, per national averages compiled by HomeGuide. Air conditioner cost averages often range from $3,350 to $5,912, but your total cost might vary.
There are a couple of aspects that influence your total cost, including:
- The air conditioner model you select, since more energy-efficient ones are more expensive.
- The size your space needs.
- If you need to replace your ductwork, which can happen if your ductwork is dated or inefficient.
We give free estimates at Tri City Fuel & Heating Co., Inc. so you can know you’re getting a good deal. And with our wide range of air conditioners, there’s an energy-efficient model that fits just about any budget.
Air Conditioner Size
Air conditioner size is crucial. A system that’s too small will have difficulty keeping your residence cool. And one that’s too big may turn on and off too frequently, or short cycle. This behavior can inflate your utility expenses and wear your air conditioner out more quickly. This may also cause temperature instabilities and make your home feel less comfy.
At Tri City Fuel & Heating Co., Inc., our technicians have many years of experience in properly sizing and installing the right air conditioner for your house. The right size depends on how big your home is, plus a couple other factors. Some of the most typical sizes include:
- 2 ton, which cools up to 1,000 square feet
- 3 ton, which cools up to 1,600 square feet
- 4 ton, which cools up to 1,900 square feet
- 5 ton, which cools more than 2,000 square feet
Other factors that can affect air conditioner size are:
- The weather in West Columbia
- Ductwork quality and age
- How many windows your house has and the style, as large or picture windows might be less efficient
- If your house gets more sun or shade
- Insulation quality and depth
- How many people are in your family
Your air conditioner’s efficiency is linked to its SEER, or Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating. This ranking measures how proficiently it uses electricity to create cooling. The bigger the number, the more efficient the air conditioner is.
When you’re installing a new air conditioner, it’s important to be aware:
- Old air conditioners are classified around 8-9 SEER.
- Modern air conditioners start at 13 SEER. Ones installed in the southwest and southeast must be no less than 14 SEER due to U.S. Department of Energy mandates. As of 2017, these SEER rating requirements have saved homeowners trillions of dollars.
- ENERGY STAR®-certified air conditioners begin at 14.5 SEER.
- Higher SEER-rated air conditioners come with additional features to help you save more. These features may involve variable-speed cooling. Instead of running at full blast all the time, these air conditioners can reduce blower speeds based on your cooling needs. This creates quieter and more energy-efficient cooling. While an air conditioner with a better SEER rating is often pricier, it could be eligible for valuable rebates. And the energy savings over time could help it pay for itself.
Start Your Air Conditioning Installation with Tri City Fuel & Heating Co., Inc. Now
When you’re doing air conditioning replacement, the company who hooks it up is just as important as the model you select. Tri City Fuel & Heating Co., Inc. is one of the most trusted names for air conditioning installation in West Columbia. From helping you choose the right solution for your house to discussing financing options to professional installation, working with our professionals is a breeze. Reach us at 803-265-4208 to begin right away!