5 Things to Consider When Replacing an Air Conditioner
Has your central air just stopped working?
Are you noticing subtle, or perhaps not so subtle, warning signs it may be time to replace your air conditioner?
Maybe you’ve just become increasingly energy-conscious or you’re sick of high utility bills from running an older less energy-efficient air conditioner?
Replacing a home’s central air conditioner is a significant investment and big decision. Whatever reason you may have for needing a new AC, there are a few things to consider before replacing a whole-house air conditioner.
#1 – How Soon Do You Need to Replace Your Air Conditioner?
While this decision is ultimately yours and yours alone, there are a few things to consider. If your central air has stopped working altogether, and your budget is tight, could you get by with a few window air conditioning units and fans until next summer?
For many, the answer is no. The thought of being utterly miserable in the heat is just way too much to handle. Especially if there are kids, the elderly, or a health condition in the equation.
It’s okay if home comfort is important to you. That’s nothing to be ashamed about. Many of us have become accustomed to cool homes and simply can’t live any other way for an extended period of time.
But be sure to stand your ground if a contractor pressures you into choosing a new air conditioner before they walk out the door.
Remember this. In our lifetimes, the average homeowner only replaces an entire cooling system once or twice. It’s understandable you’d want to research this decision. The payoff of making the right decision is well worth that diligence.
#2 – Can Your Air Conditioner Be Repaired Rather than Replaced?
Much of this depends on the age of your air conditioner and the extent of the problems you’re having with it.
If you air conditioner is older, it might be better to replace it now rather than continuing to service an out-of-date system or paying high utility bills.
If it’s an older unit, and its best years are behind it, but the “fix” is as simple as repairing or replacing a failed part, then it’s fine to do that. Especially if you can get another year or two of use from the AC before having to replace it.
# 3 – What Size Air Conditioner Do You Need?
In most cases, the size of your previous air conditioner is just fine for the replacement AC. But, to be on the safe side, you’ll want your contractor to perform a load analysis to ensure your replacement AC is properly sized.
You don’t necessarily always want to go bigger with an air conditioner – even if you’ve added rooms. A system that’s too big for the space its cooling is trouble. Your utility bills will be higher and the system may lose its ability to control humidity, which can lead to comfort issues.
A good air conditioning contractor will walk through your home and talk to you. They won’t just measure square footage. They’ll ask about your comfort from room to room and get a feel for your usage.
If you feel they don’t, get a second or even third opinion.
#4 – Should You Replace Your Furnace When Replacing Your AC?
Chances are, the air conditioner and furnace in your home were installed at the same time. While one doesn’t necessarily need to be replaced if the other does, they both have similar lifespans. One might fail before the other, but if they were originally installed as a matched set, you’ll want an HVAC specialist to assess the other’s condition also. If both units are on their last legs, it may benefit you to have both replaced at the same time.
A qualified contractor can estimate your cooling system’s remaining usable life and offer their advice or recommendation.
# 5 – Should You Invest in a Programmable Thermostat?
If reducing energy costs is a priority to you, a programmable thermostat is a quick and simple way to do just that. The programmable feature lets you adjust temperatures for times you’re at work or away from home. Certain advanced models can also regulate cooling based on weather conditions; for instance, fluctuating temperatures outside or the humidity on a given day.
Many homeowners already have a programmable thermostat but don’t use the programmable feature for these energy savings. Ask your contractor about new advanced programmable thermostats on the market that have Wi-Fi connectivity included. They could also explain any features of your current thermostat you might not be unaware of.
Considering an Air Conditioner Replacement in Cranberry Township?
Spurk HVAC provides Cranberry Township air conditioner replacement. Our technicians service the surrounding suburbs and counties also. Call 724.766.8105 to schedule!