Deciding Between Air Conditioning Repair or Replacement? Consider Ducts and Insulation Too

by Greg Leisgang on June 5, 2014

Posted in: Air Conditioners

air conditioning repair or replacementIf you're concerned that your cooling system isn't up to the challenge of keeping you comfortable this summer, now's the right time to investigate your options. When deciding between air conditioning repair and replacement in your Cincinnati home, keep these considerations in mind:

  • Equipment age - The typical life span for an A/C is between 15 and 20 years. As it ages, its efficiency and reliability gradually decline. If your equipment is in that range, replacing it could let you avoid the headaches of a sudden failure and the cost of future repairs.
  • Ductwork - A leaky ductwork system could be costing you between 10 and 30 percent of the cooling system output. Sealing and insulating the ducts could make A/C repair a viable option, and addressing the problem is vital even if you decide on replacement.
  • Insulation - If your home is lacking sufficient insulation, replacing the aging air conditioner with the most efficient equipment on the market may not make a significant improvement in comfort or energy consumption. By increasing the insulation level, you will likely find that you can cool your home effectively with smaller, less expensive equipment.

If you decide to replace the A/C, consider these factors as well:

  • SEER rating - The seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER) of a new air conditioner affects how much you'll spend on cooling over the life of the equipment. Today's models range between the minimum standard 13 SEER and 24 SEER. Units with higher SEER ratings are more energy efficient, but they also cost more. An HVAC professional can help you weigh the upfront costs versus the lifetime energy savings to choose the most efficient and affordable model.
  • Correct sizing - If your new equipment is too small, it won't keep you comfortable. Oversized air conditioners cycle on and off frequently, which makes it difficult to dehumidify a space properly. Air conditioner sizing shouldn't be done using a rule of thumb. A detailed load calculation is essential.

If you're debating replacement or air conditioning repair in your Cincinnati area home and you need expert advice, contact us today at JonLe Heating & Cooling.

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