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HVAC System: Repair or Replace?

As a homeowner, one of the toughest decisions you’ll have to make about your air conditioner is when it’s time for a new unit. Although a new air conditioner can be a big investment, so can the costs of continuing to repair and operate an old, inefficient unit. So how are you supposed to know when it’s time to replace your air conditioner? Here are six signs we’ve listed below that are sure to help you make your decision!

1.The age of your system

The average lifespan of an air conditioning system is 10-15 years. If your unit is close to ten years old or older, you may want to consider replacing it instead of repairing it. Heating and cooling costs account for roughly 44% of your utility costs. If you’re paying more than the average for your area, your air conditioning system may not be working effectively.

2.Your system uses R-22 Freon

Older air conditioning systems also use R-22, a refrigerant, which is phasing out production of R-22 Freon between now and 2020 to meet environmental protection regulations. As a result, the costs of Freon are rising exponentially. Freon costs between $40 and $175 per pound. Fixing a leak and adding several pounds of refrigerant can cost you hundreds of dollars per service call.

3.Hvac related expenses are increasing

Is your air conditioner and furnace running a lot? If your utility bills are going up and there isn’t any change in the way you’re using it, that’s a good indication that your system is no longer as efficient as it should be. Another obvious sign is the amount of money you are paying for air conditioning repairs, and the frequency with which you have to have the system repaired.

4.Rooms are too hot or cold

Do you have a hard time keeping your home cool? Hot and Cold Rooms? Noisy HVAC system?

This could be the sign of an aging air conditioner or even an incorrectly sized system for the square footage of your home.. Regardless of the cause, you want your air conditioner to do its job! If it’s not going to keep your home cool, you’ll want to replace it with a unit that will.

5.Poor indoor air quality

The constant presence of dust in your home – even after cleaning, is a good indication that there are leaks in the ductwork. Those leaks will compromise the efficiency of your air conditioning system, and that will increase the operating cost. Better air quality in your home can reduce allergy and asthma triggers.

6.HVAC system is inefficient

If your air conditioner has a low SEER rating, it can cost you a lot of money to operate it. Until 2006, 10 SEER was standard, but these days, the minimum allowed by federal law is 14 SEER. That translates to 30% less electrical consumption and 30% lower cooling bills than equipment installed just a few years ago.. If your air conditioner’s SEER rating is below 13, you can cut back on your energy costs by replacing it with a new, more efficient unit.


  • AirMTech Whether it’s a weekend road-trip or stay at the lake house, remember to follow some of these energy-saving tips to avoid unnecessary expenses while you’re away. Reply
  • Eli Richardson Now that you mentioned it, my sister has noticed rooms have different temperatures most of the time. Thanks for stating that it could be due to the unit not being the right size. I better let her know so she can hire a professional to inspect the system. Reply
  • Greta James Thank you for your tip to consider replacing your HVAC if it is older than 15 years. My sister was telling me yesterday that her ac has been making weird noises. I wonder if she should look into professionals who could get it repaired or replaced. Reply
  • Oscar Morrison It's good to know that if my HVAC bills seem to be getting higher then it might suggest the system itself is getting old and needs to be replaced. We're still relatively early in the cold season, but my bills are noticeably higher than they were this time last year. Maybe it's time to look into getting a new system installed. Reply
  • David Johnson That's crazy that if your AC was built in 2006 its energy efficiency is way less than modern systems. I just moved into an older home from the last century and the AC is not cooling down our house well. I'll have to find air conditioning services. Reply
  • Derek McDoogle My uncle bought a house and he says that it needs a few upgrades including the AC system. I like how you said that if your actual AC unit takes too long to cool down a room, it might be a sign that it needs to be repaired or replaced. I will suggest to him to contact an AC contractor so that they can go to that place and see what they need to do. Reply
  • Vivian Black My husband owns a small retail store and the furnace is broken currently right in the middle of winter. He loves how you talked about rooms being too hot or cold and how that can be a sign of a problem. We will keep these tips in mind as we search for a professional that can help repair his furnace. Reply
  • Charlotte Fleet I like how you mention that if the air quality inside is poor it could be a sign that there is a leak in the ductwork. My husband has been mentioning that he is having a harder time sleeping and always feels like he has dust in his mouth and nose. I think we should find a good air conditioning contractor who can help us figure out the best way to either repair or replace it. Reply
  • AffiliateLabz Great content! Super high-quality! Keep it up! :) Reply
  • Zoe Campos I agree that it is very tough to decide if I need a new air conditioning unit since it will require time and money on my end. I've been living in this house for about ten years now and my AC had been releasing noises that may indicate the need for replacement. My HVAC related expenses haven't been checked thoroughly for a while, so I'm not entirely sure if I'm paying more than I should. Still, I'd consult an expert in heating and air conditioning to see if we could still do some repair. Reply
  • Access Doors and Panels This post is definitely satisfying. Keep posting quality articles for your followers! Reply
  • Rachel Frampton The tenant in one of the units in my apartment building is complaining about the poor performance of the air conditioner, therefore, she would like to have it replaced. I never knew that when an electricity bill increases, but the consumption is still the same, it's an indication that the air conditioner is not functioning well. That might explain her huge electricity bill as well, I guess it's best to find a commercial air conditioning service that may check if the AC could still be repaired. Reply
  • BrianLoR Especially useful....looking forth to visiting again. Reply
  • Jamessloms Thanks for the purpose of providing these kinds of awesome content material. Reply
  • Kate Hansen It was really helpful when you said to get a new unit if it's struggling with keeping your rooms cool. My husband and I have noticed how our AC hasn't been working well this past couple of weeks, and our rooms have been feeling super hot even when we turn the unit on. We'll have to look into hiring an HVAC contractor to come and see if our AC needs to be replaced. Reply
  • Kristofer Van Wagner It never occurred to me that an outdated HVAC system will require service. I am uncertain how old my heating system is, but the last time we had it serviced was last year. I think I will call for a reliable HVAC contractor to have it serviced to avoid further damage. Reply
  • Kate Hansen It's good to know that constant dust in your home is a bad sign. For the past couple of weeks, I have noticed how there is an increase of dust in my home, even after I clean, and I was wondering if that meant that something could be wrong with my AC. I'll have to look into hiring an HVAC contractor to come and see if my AC unit needs some repairs. Reply
  • Alicia Byrne Thank you for pointing out that freon costs between $40-$175 per pound and that the cost depends on whether there's a leak and if we need more refrigerant or not. I actually have an old AC in the house that is leaking. I would imagine that I'll need to have the refrigerant changed to make it work better. Reply
  • Thomas Clarence I appreciate you helping me to understand that the average lifespan of an air conditioning unit is between ten and fifteen years. I would imagine that it would be a good idea to have regular maintenance performed on the unit if you want it to reach that age and stay efficient for a long time. Having the outdoor unit clean and having the indoor filter replaced regularly would probably be a good thing to do. Reply
  • Luke I really like this guide! A lot of people think they can stretch the life of their system to 15 or so years, but it often backfires. I always bring up just about every point made here to people asking the same question. Reply
  • Emily Bennette This is some really good information about how to keep your HVAC system in good shape. It is nice to know that it would be smart to consider if your HVAC system is making any odd noises. That is great for me to know because I want to make sure that my system will be able to keep me cool this summer without breaking down. Reply
  • Kristofer Van Wagner I was never aware that it is important to have our HVAC furnace repaired when our HVAC system is inefficient. My wife mentioned that our furnace has been faulty. I will schedule for a technician to have it repaired soon. Reply
  • Access Doors and Panels I like the helpful info you supply for your articles. Thanks for sharing a smart thought. Reply
  • Rebecca Gardner I was surprised when you said that inconsistent heating can indicate our home's HVAC system is actually the wrong size. My husband and I moved to our current home about a month ago but we've noticed some spots like the kitchen and guest bedroom are always warmer than the rest of the house. Thanks for letting me know we should consult an HVAC service since we might benefit from getting a furnace replacement soon. Reply
  • Kristofer Van Wagner I love that this post mentioned it is best for us to have our HVAC system replaced if it exceeds the life period. My wife and I just moved into a new house that comes with an HVAC system. However, as I am uncertain of its condition, I will call a technician to have it inspected before making a decision whether to have it repaired or replaced. Reply
  • Kristofer Van Wagner I appreciate that this post mentioned that it is important for us to choose an HVAC contractor with a lot of experience. The other day my wife mentioned that our A/C needs to have its heater repaired. I will call for a contractor to have the issue fixed as soon as possible. Reply

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Air Mechanic Services is a state licensed air conditioning & HVAC repair contractor in Katy, TX. We offer 24/7 Emergency Service to all of our customers. You can always count on Air Mechanic Services to get to you fast and get the job done right the first time. We use state-of-the-art diagnostic equipment to find the source of your heating and air conditioning problems and fix them fast.

Air Mechanic Services Air Conditioning and Heating contractor in Katy, TX