When you're pinching pennies or trying to stay on budget, it's tempting to choose the quick, inexpensive fix. However, when your air conditioner is on the fritz, the cheap fix might turn out to be more expensive in the long run. If you're wondering whether it's feasible to fix your old unit or if it's time to get a new one, consider the following.
Just like you, your air conditioning unit wants to retire someday. The average life span of a typical unit is about 10 to 15 years. If your unit is older, it's better to replace it with a new model. Newer models are more efficient, which means your house will be more comfortable and your utility bills will be lower. What's more, you will save money on repair costs since older units typically need more work.
On average, you can expect to spend around $5,000 for a new air conditioner. If you have expensive tastes, you may spend a little more to get the unit you want. Since the cost for a new unit is so high, you might think that repairing your faulty on is your best option. And it might be. However, expensive and repeated repairs may end up costing you more than a new unit in the long run. For example, the cost to repair a refrigerant leak can cost up to $1,500. And each service call will cost you hundreds; parts will cost you more. Additionally, an inefficient furnace may significantly inflate your utility bills.
Freon is becoming obsolete. In fact, the government is phasing it out. The phase-out process has made it more difficult to find and purchase Freon, all of which affects its price. If your air conditioner needs new Freon, you will spend a pretty penny to secure some. For this reason, it's a good idea to upgrade to a new unit that uses R410A as a refrigerant.
If your house is warm, dusty, humid or otherwise uncomfortable as the outdoor temperatures soar, it's probably time to replace your air conditioner. An inefficient unit may not be able to keep your second floor cool or remove excess moisture from the air. In addition to being uncomfortable, you will end up paying higher utility bills all for the privilege of being uncomfortable.
There are several things that might make getting a new furnace a better option than fixing your old one. If you're unsure which way to go, talk to your HVAC technician. They will be able to assess your unit and help you make a more informed decision. Contact a company like United Heating Cooling and Plumbing Inc to get started.