We get this question nearly every day and the answer, obviously, is never exactly the same. There are several reasons why you should or should not replace your HVAC unit and those reasons will vary on a case to case basis. Generally speaking, if you don't cut corners on the initial installation and you stay on top of your preventative maintenance, your HVAC unit should last 15+ years. We ALWAYS will try to fix your unit first and only do replacements when they are absolutely necessary. Our technicians are not salesmen, they are HVAC guys who are very good at troubleshooting and diagnosing problems and then fixing them. There is no incentive program for our technicians so there will never be any unnecessary up-sell.
That being said, every now and then you absolutely should replace your unit. Here are a few reasons why:
Energy Savings: Each year HVAC manufacturers come out with newer and better models. These new models are typically more efficient than the previous model and will certainly be more efficient than a 5 or 10 year old unit. Anything over 10+ years old simply will not be running as efficiently as a new unit today. That's not to say an old unit can't run perfectly well and provide great heating and cooling, it just means it will cost more to do so. When looking for a new unit consider looking into the SEER rating. SEER is an acronym for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. SEER ratings range from 14 (the lowest rating allowed in the state of California) all the way up to a 26. Generally speaking most homes will not require a SEER rating over 14-20 in order to see savings. Much larger rooms may require a higher rating to work at maximum efficiency. The higher the rating, the higher the cost - so when it's time to replace your unit make sure to get a SEER rating that is suitable for your needs.
Corrosion / Falling apart: Many of us San Diegans live in close proximity to the ocean which means the marine layer and more importantly the salty air. This environment can corrode units (and cars, paint, wood, etc.) more quickly than in other regions of the US. We have replaced many units in Coronado and Point Loma specifically and unfortunately, units in such close proximity to the ocean air do not last quite as long. It is more cost effective to buy a new unit as opposed to paying for several repairs, getting a couple more years of life out of it and then still having to replace the unit.
Adding Value To Your Home: Many people feel they want to add value to their home by upgrading their HVAC system. Anytime you replace an HVAC system it will be a significant investment but can save you money in the long run. Whether you want to increase value before putting it on the market or simply want to be more comfortable in your home a new system may be worthwhile depending on your situation.
Comfort: If your old unit is not working quite as well as it used to then it may be time to replace it. New units will work better and keep your house or individual rooms at the exact temperature you want.
If you think it's time to replace your HVAC system or are interested in a service or repair, give us a call and we can send one of our trustworthy experts out to evaluate and discuss your HVAC needs: