Frequent HVAC repairs are quite common, especially when the system is getting old. This means that you’ll keep incurring costs every time you call that technician or you have to replace part of the system.
All too often, homeowners are left wondering which the best cause of action should be. Should you continue repairing the system, or is a complete replacement the best option?
In some instances, minor repairs are enough to get your broken HVAC system up and running. However, for some breakdowns, a full replacement is the ideal option.
So, how do you know when to replace HVAC systems? Or are the repairs enough?
Well, here are some great indicators you should consider when making that decision.
1. HVAC Age
The first thing that should come into your mind when considering when to replace HVAC systems is your system’s age. Is your unit three years old? Five years old? Fifteen years old? Whatever age it is should not exceed 20 years (this is the useful life of an HVAC unit).
Typically, a system that is ten years or older starts to require repairs too often. An older system tends to be very inefficient and has a lower SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio).
Here, you can also apply the $5,000 rule. It dictates that if the cost to repair, multiplied by the age of the unit, is more than $5,000, replace the HVAC. If the total is less than that, consider repairing it.
2. Frequent HVAC repairs
If you keep calling your HVAC technician for repairs, then it is time to purchase a new system. However, if the repairs are minor, you can contact a professional who will advise you on the way forward.
Seeking the services of a qualified technician might help solve your problems once and for all.
3. Some Funny Smell Coming from your System
Typically, an HVAC should not produce a funny odor at all. If it does, then this is a cause for alarm.
A strong odor is a sign of a burned wire in your system, while a musty one means your unit may be having mold. In this case, will you repair or replace HVAC?
Well, this will be in the hands of your technician. He will know whether the burns or musty smell requires repairing or replacing the unit.
4. Escalating Energy Bills
Increasing energy bills are indicators that there is a problem with your HVAC unit. If you are tired of spending more every month on energy, then it is time to sit down and find a solution.
You can repair or replace your unit if the bills are high while the consumption remains the same. The amount of change in the monthly energy bills will show you the best cause of action.
5. Water Leaks Around your AC
Water leaks and the HVAC can never be in the same space. A water leak is mainly a problem with the refrigerant.
Reach out to a qualified technician to determine the damage that the leak has caused to your system. In most cases, they recommend you buy another system when the damages are severe.
6. Thermostat not Working Properly
A thermostat is the backbone of your HVAC system. It is the one that ‘communicates’ with other components of your system.
If it is not operating correctly, it means that your entire unit will be affected. Reach out for help to know whether you will repair or replace your unit.
In the worst-case scenario, the latter would be the most favorable option.
7. Loud Noises from the AC
Loud noises coming from the HVAC can disturb you and your family’s peace. Also, the loud noises are red flags that something is amiss with your unit.
If the noises are in the form of squeals, grinds, or scraps, then there is a problem with the internal components of your HVAC unit.
You can choose to either repair it at first. However, if the noises persist after repair, this is the appropriate time to replace the entire system.
8. Advancements over Time
In recent years, the HVAC industry has evolved immensely. As much as older HVAC systems can still function properly, it is essential to keep up with the current trends. There are plenty of new models that you can choose from, and they come with better specifications.
Therefore, it means you don’t have to wonder when to replace HVAC. If your unit is an old-timer, it might be the ideal time for you to replace it.
Safety should always come first at any given time. The moment your HVAC unit poses a safety issue to your family, then it’s undoubtedly the right time to get a new one.
For instance, your unit may be emitting poisonous carbon monoxide. In this case, you should just let it go!
Repair vs Replace HVAC Benefits
Numerous benefits come with both repairing and replacing your HVAC unit. These help homeowners figure out when to repair or replace HVAC systems.
The Advantages Associated with Replacement
- Air quality and comfort; new systems offer better controls of temperature and humidity that minimize mildew and mold growth. It promotes both air quality and comfort for your house.
- Convenience; replacing your HVAC unit means you do not have to live in an uncomfortable space as you wait for repair services.
- Warranty; new units have a warranty, thus assisting you in saving on repair costs (if any problems arise).
- Substantial cost savings
- Tax incentives
The Advantages Associated with Repairs
The following are the pros of repairing your HVAC unit;
- Maintenance; If your system is neither old nor new, simple maintenance techniques will work for you. These techniques will assist in prolonging the lifespan of your unit, making replacement an unnecessary alternative.
- Moving; you may be considering moving out of your current residence soon. If your system is still operational, engage a local real estate agent to determine whether you should repair or replace it.
- The 50% rule; if the cost of repairing vs. replacing your system does not exceed half of its value, then settle for it.
- Newer systems; it is evident that repair makes more financial sense when compared to replacement for a new system.
The bottom line is, whichever way homeowners choose, whether to repair or replace HVAC units, money is involved. The option that seems to offer a significant return on investment will ultimately be the deciding factor.
The decision you will go for will determine what your cool or hot day will be like! Contact an expert today to find out more about whether repairing or replacing your HVAC system is the best option for you.