Are you thinking that its time to replace your homes air conditioning system? There are many factors that you should consider when the time comes to change your air conditioning equipment.
Properly maintained air conditioning equipment should last more than 10 years even in our harsh South Florida climate. If your equipment is more than 10 years old and you think its time to replace your system, there are several factors to consider regarding the existing equipment including efficiency (designed and effective), reliability and costs of repair.
Equipment Age: Some systems last more than 15 years and others less than 10. If the system is reliable, efficient and clean and maintains comfortable conditions within your home, we would recommend that it continue to be properly maintained and continue to operate until a major failure probability is identified or actually occurs. If the system is not reliable or is unable to maintain proper temperature and humidity levels within the home then it is time to look into system replacement.
Efficiency: Design efficiency is the efficiency rating of the system when it is newly installed. Effective efficiency is the actual efficiency of the system as it operates currently, as even with proper maintenance all systems lose efficiency over time as components get dirty, corrode and wear. You must consider this when using efficiency as a reason to upgrade the air conditioning system.
Reliability: Equipment reliability is always most important especially since many of our customers are part-time residents. Systems have to be reliable to maintain humidity and temperatures to acceptable levels while the owners are away.
Cost of Repair: if your equipment is more than 10 years old it is likely that the manufacturer's parts warranty has expired making major component repairs significantly more expensive.
If you decide that equipment replacement is necessary, there are a few issues that need to be clarified so customers are educated as to what a typical air conditioning system replacement does and DOES NOT require:
Refrigerant Line Set: Replacement of the refrigerant line set (copper tubing that connects the outdoor condensing unit to indoor air handler) is NOT required in 99.99% of all air conditioning equipment replacements. We have done thousands of equipment changeouts and we never replace a line set unless it has an existing un-repairable leak or is otherwise damaged. In the past 10 years, we have only replaced a few un-damaged line sets at the customer’s request. Line set replacement is almost always unnecessary and is usually a sales tactic that should be avoided.
Duct System: Replacement of the entire duct system is also rarely needed during an equipment changeout. Most of the issues we find with duct systems are that the ducts are undersized and require modification but NOT a complete replacement. Most duct issues are solved by adding 1 or 2 return ducts or strategically increasing the size of a supply trunk line or a few supply ducts. Duct modifications are very common but duct replacement is usually only required when it is contaminated or mostly damaged beyond repair.
Once these questions have been answered the customer can decide how to proceed.
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