If you’ve ever been without air conditioning for any length of time during the hot summer months, then you know how unbearable it can be. That’s why it’s imperative to keep your AC unit in good working order so it doesn’t decide to stop working on the hottest day of the year. Keeping up with annual maintenance, inspections and following the manufacturer’s instructions for proper operation will keep your AC in good working order.
But what happens when, despite your best efforts, your AC unit just isn’t getting the job done. This usually signals that it’s time to start thinking about replacing your air conditioner. If you’re on fence about whether to replace it or keep having it fixed, here are a few simple guidelines that can help you decide.
- The AC unit doesn’t cool like it used to. There can be a lot of reasons why an AC unit stops cooling effectively, and some are minor problems that can be repaired. But when the problem persists, even after having your HVAC technician visit every week, you should have the unit replaced. The cost of a new air conditioner will be less than what you’ll spend on constant repairs.
- The AC unit is 10 years old. This is the approximate lifespan of an air conditioner. Even if it’s running okay you should seriously consider replacing it. Why? Because the technology improves so much over a decade that your new air conditioner will run smoother, quieter and be much more energy efficient. The energy savings alone will make the replacement worth it. Don’t wait until it stops working to take action.
- Your air conditioner sounds like it’s about to fall apart. All those strange noises you hear, like clanking, ticking, squeaking, thumping, hissing and maybe a few groans mean something is very wrong. Your AC unit is trying to tell you that it’s time to put it out to pasture. Give it a proper send-off and then buy a new one. Not only will you save money (as mentioned plenty of times above), but your home will be safer too. Air conditioners can cause fires – it’s not worth the risk.
- Your AC unit uses R-22 freon. The US government is phasing out this specific refrigerant because of its harmful effects on the ozone. The phase-out program began back in the early 2000s, so if your air conditioner still uses this refrigerant, you are overdue for a new unit. If you’re still hesitant, look at it this way: you’ll be saving the environment while saving money on energy costs.
- Your air conditioner is no longer right for your home. Many people buy a house and keep all the appliances without thinking about it. But sometimes the HVAC system might not be quite right. Maybe the AC unit is too big for the size of your house and you’re wasting money by paying for energy you don’t need. Or the AC unit might be too small, not cooling your house effectively. Talk to an HVAC technician to see if your AC unit is right for your house. There are guidelines for how much power an AC unit needs to cool every square foot of your home.
Are you unsure about whether you should keep your current air conditioner or buy a new one? Call us today and one of our experienced HVAC professionals will evaluate your current AC unit and make a recommendation. Don’t get stuck in the heat this summer!