With proper maintenance, your air conditioner can work for 15 years or greater. But even the best maintained air conditioner will need to be updated at some point.
When you’re starting to plan for air conditioning installation in Houston, we know that the price is number one on your list of questions. The good news is that buying a new air conditioner may be more economical than you realize, because of rebates, our special offers and financing for qualified customers. You’ll also get enhanced energy efficiency, which will usually pay off over its life span through lower utility bills.
Here’s what to anticipate when you’re installing a new air conditioner.
When to Replace Your Air Conditioner
Knowing when to repair or replace your air conditioner may be difficult. Here’s what we advise.
- Your air conditioner is older than 10 years old. While some could last longer, most air conditioners last for around 15 years with routine maintenance. We advise prepping for air conditioning replacement near the 10-year point. Even if you get a new one when it’s only a decade old, the U.S. Department of Energy says this swap could save you 20-40% on cooling expenses.
- You’ve skipped annual maintenance for many years. Similar to a car, you cooling system needs annual air conditioning maintenance. Skipping this essential service can lead to reduced efficiency, more recurring repairs and even a shorter life span.
- Your air conditioner has to have frequent or costly repairs. Needing air conditioning repair is usually the result of not doing tune-ups. But as your air conditioner gets older, it’s more likely to suffer a big breakdown. When repairs are greater than half the cost of a new air conditioner, you should get a new one.
- Your house isn’t comfortable. If your home feels too humid or you’re dealing with hot and cold spots in certain spaces, your air conditioner could be struggling to keep up. This is a clue it’s time to replace it.
- Your cooling bills are costly. Your air conditioner gets less efficient as it becomes older. As a consequence, it may need to run more often or longer to keep your residence at your desired temp. Newer air conditioners have the most up-to-date energy-efficient technology to keep your house cool and cooling costs low.
- Your air conditioner has R-22 refrigerant. If your air conditioner was installed before 2010, there’s a high likelihood it has Freon. Also called R-22, this refrigerant is no longer being made as a result of its detrimental effects on the environment. You can continue to use your air conditioner, but if it were to experience a refrigerant leak, fixing that would be extremely expensive. This is because R-22 is only available in limited, recycled amounts.
- Your air conditioner is less than 10 years old. If your air conditioner is newer, it’s wisest to repair it.
- Repairs aren’t needed all the time or reasonable. The best way to prevent unexpected repairs is to have routine service scheduled. But when repairs are only needed not very often or are reasonable, repair your air conditioner.
- Your air conditioner is covered by a warranty. Most air conditioners are accompanied by a 5- to 10-year limited warranty that typically covers the compressor. Your exact warranty length depends on your manufacturer, but it provides valuable protection in the event of a huge failure. If your air conditioner is protected by warranty, we recommend fixing it.
Air Conditioner Cost
Many homeowners spend around $4,631 on a new air conditioner, based on national averages compiled by HomeGuide. Air conditioner cost averages often range from $3,350 to $5,912, but your precise cost may be lower or higher.
There are several details that impact your total cost, including:
- The air conditioner model you choose, since more energy-efficient ones are pricier.
- The size you need.
- If you need to put in new ductwork, which can be required if your ductwork is aging or separated.
We provide free estimates at Marcos AC & Heating so you can be sure you’re getting a good deal. And with our full range of air conditioners, there’s an energy-efficient model that fits just about any budget.
Air Conditioner Size
Air conditioner size is crucial. A system that’s too little will have difficulty keeping your residence cool. And one that’s oversized could turn on and off too many times, or short cycle. This act can increase your energy costs and wear your air conditioner out prematurely. This might also lead to temperature instabilities and make your residence feel less cool.
At Marcos AC & Heating, our technicians have many years of experience in accurately sizing and installing the right air conditioner for your house. The right size depends on how big your residence is, in addition to a few other factors. Some of the most standard sizes include:
- 2 ton, which cools up to 1,000 square feet
- 3 ton, which cools up to 1,600 square feet
- 4 ton, which cools up to 1,900 square feet
- 5 ton, which cools more than 2,000 square feet
Other things that can impact air conditioner size are:
- The climate in Houston
- Ductwork quality and age
- How many windows you have and the style, because expansive or picture windows might be less efficient
- If your house receives more sun or shade
- Insulation quality and thickness
- How many people are in your family
Your air conditioner’s efficiency is tied to its SEER, or Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating. This number measures how efficiently it uses electricity to create cooling. The greater the rating, the more efficient the air conditioner is.
When you’re installing a new air conditioner, it’s essential to know:
- Old air conditioners are classified around 8-9 SEER.
- New air conditioners start at 13 SEER. Ones installed in the southwest and southeast must be a minimum of 14 SEER due to U.S. Department of Energy regulations. As of 2017, these SEER rating requirements have saved homeowners trillions of dollars.
- ENERGY STAR®-certified air conditioners begin at 14.5 SEER.
- Higher SEER-rated air conditioners come with extra features to help you save more. These features may involve variable-speed cooling. Instead of going at 100% all the time, these air conditioners can reduce blower speeds based on your cooling needs. This leads to quieter and more energy-efficient comfort. While an air conditioner with a better SEER rating is often more expensive, it could be eligible for extra rebates. And the energy savings over its lifetime may help it pay for itself.
Start Your Air Conditioning Installation with Marcos AC & Heating Right Away
When you’re doing air conditioning replacement, the company who hooks it up is just as critical as the model you go with. Marcos AC & Heating is one of the number one names for air conditioning installation in Houston. From helping you choose the recommended solution for your residence to going over financing options to professional installation, collaborating with our pros is a breeze. Call us at 713-469-3357 to begin right away!