As temperatures warm up and summer approaches, you’re probably thinking about turning on your central air or installing your air conditioning unit(s) for the season. Whether you have central air or window AC units, at some point discussions of when – or if – you should replace them will come up. How can you know whether or not to replace your cooling system? What are some signs to look out for? This post answers these questions.
A telltale sign that you might need to replace your AC is frequent breakdowns or the need for repairs. Air conditioning units typically last between 10-20 years, depending on use and model, among other factors. If you find that you have to invest more and more into your unit for it to work properly, it’s time to replace it. Consistent breakdowns or repairs suggest that the unit as a whole is not working as efficiently as it should. Even in New England, other factors like humidity and overuse during the warmer months can lead to the breakdown of single parts and eventually the whole unit – whether central or window.
Is your AC unit blowing out hot air instead of cool? Are there times when your AC is inconsistent or takes a while to cool your home even if the thermostat is working? A reduction in efficiency means a replacement unit is in order. Although certain parts and minor fixes can sometimes help – like cleaning and replacing the filters regularly – an AC unit is only efficient for so long. Aside from working harder to cool your home, some other signs of an AC unit that is not as efficient as it should be are unusual or new humming sounds, ice buildup, or cycling on and off.
Increase in Energy Costs
Have you noticed your electricity bills going up? Is this a consistent pattern over several months or years despite repairs? An increase in energy costs is a surefire sign that your AC unit is not working as it should. If your air conditioning is working overtime to pump out cool air, the result is higher costs for minimal efficiency. This problem means it’s time to get a new AC unit, or at least look into the options available to you.
As stated above, age is also a factor when determining whether or not to replace your AC unit. Depending on how well you maintain it, your central air unit should last somewhere between 10-15 years. Window units need to be replaced slightly sooner, after 8-10 years. If your AC unit surpasses this timeframe and has one of the other signs discussed in this article, it’s time to replace it.
Ready to discuss upgrading or replacing your air conditioning unit? Call Alves Fuels and we will help you find and install an efficient system that cools your home for years to come or schedule your annual cooling system checkup to make sure your unit is working properly.