This is one of those questions that we get asked all the time. Should I repair my older unit, or is it time to invest in a replacement? Well unfortunately there’s not really an easy answer. You might think that we would suggest you replace your unit because we are HVAC contractor. It’s not necessarily the case though. Often times it makes sense to repair your existing unit rather than going through the expense of a replacement. Here are some guidelines that may help you with your decision:
- If your existing unit was manufactured more than 15-20 years ago it may be time to consider an upgrade even if it’s working currently. The advancements in technology make a new unit considerably more efficient. Your savings in utility bills will go a long way towards paying for the new unit. Plus, the sad reality is that eventually your older unit will fail. There is an expected lifespan on these, and you’re getting very close to it.
- If you’re looking at replacing a compressor in your AC unit that’s a substantial repair. You can think of it as replacing the engine in your car. If you really love your car you might want to replace the engine, but it will be costly and rarely as reliable as a new car. A new unit will be more reliable than replacing the compressor and once again the efficiency in design is something you should consider.
Those two situations are typically going to result in a recommendation to replace. However, there are times when the decision isn’t so easy to make.
One rule of thumb to consider is the cost of your repair and the age of your unit. Replacement should be a consideration if your unit is beyond ¾ of its life expectance and repairs will cost more than a 1/3 of a replacement. For example if your unit is 16 years old and the repair is $700-800 you might want to consider a replacement. Always keep in mind that this might be the chance to reduce your monthly utility bills with a more efficient unit.
The best option is to have one of our certified technicians come out to your home or business and assess the situation. Some 20+ year old units work fine because they’ve been maintained well. On the other hand some 10 year old units need to be replaced due to neglect. A professional knows what to look for when evaluating your equipment. Each situation is different, but Sharp Air can help you with your difficult decision.