Couple reviewing energy bills

How to Determine if It’s Time for an AC Repair or Replacement

When your air conditioner in Scottsboro breaks down, it can be tricky to know if it’s a sign for an AC repair, or if a replacement would be a greater option for the long term. The answer isn’t the same for every homeowner. For example, a system that has been taken care of could be a smarter candidate for an AC repair because it will generally have a longer lifespan than another system that hasn’t been serviced. Many other factors should be considered on top of to this. We’ve got some questions that can help lead you.

How old is your system and how often are you repairing it?

The age of your air conditioner is a big factor in your choice to order an AC repair or invest in a replacement. Aged systems usually don’t run as well as they did when they were new—and definitely not as effectively as a new, energy-efficient model. Actually, you could lower your energy consumption by more than you thought possible if you exchange your older system with a new, energy-efficient unit. In many circumstances, this savings will rationalize investment in a replacement system.

So how old is “too old”? That can differ based on your specific equipment and how well it’s been maintained, but Energy Star proposes upgrading to an energy-efficient unit if your existing central air conditioner is more than 10 years old.

Outside your unit’s age, examine your AC repair history. If your system has stopped working a couple of times, it’s probable to break down again—this circumstance can end up costing you more money in the long run. When you think about possible rebates and improved efficiency, is a new system going to be more lucrative over time?

Many experts suggest following “The $5,000” rule. Multiply the age of your unit by the cost of the AC repair. If it’s more than $5,000, exchange the system. If it’s less, try the repair.

Here are some other questions you should consider:

  • Is your house cool enough in the summer? If not, your system isn’t running well.
  • Are your energy bills going up without enhanced usage? This is a sign that your air conditioner is breaking down.
  • Is your system properly sized? If your unit is too small for your home, it can’t function properly. Also, if you’ve recently taken measures to make your home more energy efficient, your system can in fact be larger than you need to cool a very efficient home.

If you’re unclear about if you need an AC repair or if it’s time to get a replacement, Southern Heating & Cooling Inc. can help! Our professionals can help you determine how much life remains in your system and what the best option for your home and budget will be. Call us at 256-574-1300 or set up an appointment for us to come out using our online scheduler.