When Is It Time To Replace An AC System?

Posted on: 2 May 2019

At first glance, an AC replacement project can seem costly, and consequently, folks often put such work off as long as possible. There are a number of reasons, though, why you might want to consider calling an AC replacement services technician. If you're wondering whether it's time to have your AC replaced, here are the things you should consider.

The Overall Age of the System

A typical AC configuration is designed to last between 10 and 30 years, depending on how much work it's asked to do and how it's maintained. The condition of the outdoor components, especially the condenser, will dictate a lot of this decision. Particularly in regions where a lot of sand, soil, and leaves can get into units, condenser coils can suffer considerably. The location of the condenser unit makes a big difference, too, as ones that are exposed to more pounding from the elements generally don't hold up as well.

If your system is older than 20 years, you may want to look into an AC replacement even if it's still running well. This is because many modern units offer high enough improvements in overall efficiency that a replacement might actually be cost-effective when factoring in lower energy bills.

Energy Consumption

The Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, normally called the SEER rating, on a system will tell you how well the unit performs. Most systems on the market today have ratings between 15 and 25, and 21 should be your low-end target. In 2006, the U.S. Department of Energy decreed that all new systems in many southern states have to have ratings above 13.

A technician can check your unit to verify its rating. It's also a good idea to look at your electricity bills during hot months from several years to see if consumption has gone up. Remember to look at the part that shows kilowatt hours and not the overall price, as your rates may have changed over the years.

Changes in Capacity Requirements

The amount of space you're air conditioning is likely to change with time. For example, an addition to a house might have reduced the ability of the AC to keep up. Any time your capacity requirements change, you should consider whether a replacement is a good idea. It is generally wise to not ask an AC system to produce more cooling and dehumidification output than it was originally designed to provide.

For more information, contact local AC replacement services.