BVS Home Experts

When Should an AC Unit Be Replaced: Making the Right Choices

If your air conditioner can’t cool your home, BVS can help. Call (281) 809-6417 to see what our services can do for you.

Have you been spending more money than usual on your air conditioner? You’re probably wondering, “When should an AC unit be replaced?” As the most reliable AC company in Katy, TX, BVS can help you answer this question. Pay attention to the following signs, then reach out to our professionals for assistance.

It's Too Old

With regular maintenance and moderate usage, AC systems last between 15 and 20 years. However, no matter how well you care for your air conditioner, eventually, the wear and tear will become too much, and the device will require replacement.

If your air conditioner system is older than 15 years, you’ll save money in the long run if you replace it. Once your air conditioner reaches 10 years old, start saving for a new device.

You Repair It Frequently

You’ll know it’s time to replace your air conditioner when you’re spending a lot of money repairing it. As the device ages, it breaks more often, and the components that break are usually more expensive.

According to the Texas State Energy Conservation Office, the average Texas air conditioner breaks down about twice a year. That seems like a lot, but most of these repairs are simple and affordable. If your air conditioner is at least 10 years old and you’re repairing it more than twice a year, or the repairs are expensive, you’d benefit from installing a new device.

Energy Bills Keep Increasing

Air conditioners use about 6% of all the energy produced in the United States. As a major expense, you probably know how much you pay for energy month-to-month.

As your air conditioner ages, it has to work harder to produce the same results. This happens even if your air conditioner isn’t broken.

Therefore, if you notice your energy bills skyrocketing, especially if you’re not running your air conditioner more frequently, you may want to purchase a new air conditioner. A modern model might lower your utility bills even further because you can choose an extremely efficient system.

Long-Term Benefits Outweigh Short-Term Savings

If you’re wondering, “When should an AC unit be replaced?” compare your short-term savings with long-term benefits. For example, a new air conditioner will cost you several thousand dollars, but how much are frequent repairs and high energy bills costing you?

If your air conditioner needs repairs, multiply the cost of the service with the age of the air conditioner. If the total is greater than $5,000, HVAC technicians suggest you’ll save more money in the long run by purchasing a new air conditioner. For example, if your air conditioner is 12 years old and requires a $500 repair, the long-term benefits of a new air conditioner outweigh the immediate cost of the installation (12 x $500 = $6,000).

Also, consider how long the component you’re replacing will last compared to the life expectancy of your air conditioner. For example, a compressor should last at least eight years. If your air conditioner is 10 years old, you’ll likely need a new one before your new compressor reaches its maximum age, meaning you won’t optimize your return on investment for the new component.

It Runs Too Often or Too Little

When your air conditioner works well and you set your thermostat to a reasonable temperature, your air conditioner should run for 15 to 20 minutes before reaching your desired temperature.

If your air conditioner takes longer, especially if it’s running constantly, it means the device is too old or a broken component is affecting its efficiency. It could also mean you’ve set your temperature too low. So, if you’ve set your thermostat below 70 degrees, turn it up and see if that helps.

When your air conditioner turns on and off frequently, HVAC experts call that cycling. While it might mean you have an air conditioner too large for your needs, it’s more likely your air conditioner needs repairs or replacement.

Your House Is Dusty

A fully functioning air conditioner should filter your air and eliminate most of the dust. Replace your air conditioner filter every 30 days, or more frequently if you’re a smoker or have pets. If you’re diligent about maintaining your air filter and still notice an abundance of dust in your home, consider replacing your air conditioner.

It Runs Loudly

While every air conditioner produces noise, if you notice unusual sounds or the device runs louder than normal, it indicates a problem. Clicking, rattling, and clanking all occur because of a broken component. 

You might also hear buzzing, squealing, popping, sizzling, or hissing. Regardless of the specific sound, they all mean something’s wrong; if your air conditioner is old enough, consider replacing it.

The Air's the Wrong Temperature

Your air conditioner’s basic function is to pump cool air throughout your home. If your air conditioner produces warm air, it means something is wrong.

You also might notice the air is colder than your temperature setting. This could indicate a problem with your thermostat rather than the air conditioner itself.

You Have Poor Indoor Air Quality

If you notice your allergies are bad while inside your home, or you’re frequently sick, your air conditioner might not effectively filter out the contaminants, even if you change your filter frequently. If you upgrade to a newer model, you could see a reduction in your symptoms and save some money on healthcare and medications.

Call BVS for All Your HVAC Needs

So, when should an AC unit be replaced? When it meets any of the above criteria. With over 500 five-star reviews, BVS has a proven history of quality work and customer satisfaction. Your comfort is our business; partner with us for heating and cooling service to ensure fantastic results.

Whether you need to replace your HVAC system or repair air conditioner components, BVS can help. Call (281) 809-6417 to book an appointment today.

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