Should you repair your old AC or replace it with a new air conditioning system?
Imagine your Air Conditioner Breaks Down in The Heat of Summer
You’re hosting a party this weekend. Suddenly, you notice the house gets warmer than you’re used to. The thermostats says it’s calling for cool air, but all you feel is warm air coming out of the ceiling vents. You call your local AC repair company and they tell you over the phone you have a bad compressor and it needs to be changed. Or you get the AC repair company to come out to your house. The technician doesn’t bother opening up the panels to the AC to find out what could be the problem. He tells you your AC is old and should be replaced. Wow! That’s some sort wizardry right there! How can he tell this without even opening the panel to see what’s going on with the AC?
Believe it or not, it happens all the time.
What can you expect from a reputable air conditioner repair company?
A reputable HVAC technician is going to come out to your house to properly diagnose your Heating and air system. He or she will have a meter in their bag to see if proper voltage is getting to the system. They will then test the leads of the capacitor to see if the microfarad rating meet factory standards. They should place an amp clamp around the wire to the compressor and/or condenser fan motor to see if those motors are trying to draw amperage to start up. This is the real way to get down to it and see exactly what is going on with your system.
Did you know a compressor or condenser fan motor on the outdoor AC won’t even turn on if the capacitor is bad?
Does that mean your $2000 compressor is bad? No. Actually a $210 dollar part can immediately replace your old capacitor and get you back up and running in no time. A quick check for proper refrigerant levels, amp draws and voltage to the motors and you are back in business, my friend! Having a professional HVAC technician make this repair should only cost you parts and labor, and will definitely give you peace of mind that’s it been done correctly.
Remember the tech who told you about your bad compressor over the phone? That’s a $2000 replacement. That company is clearly not in to earning your trust, just your business. Too many companies out there have so much overhead and so many high paid managers, they HAVE to sell replacement equipment. They HAVE to get to you buy a new system. A trusted, ethical company is going to come out to your house, spend some time properly diagnosing your system and give you options. But remember: you should only let them give you options if they’ve spent time properly diagnosing your system.
Should I repair the air conditioning system, or replace it?
That is the question you’ll be faced with when a major part breaks down someday. But let’s make sure it really is a major part. You may even want to get a second opinion from another company.
Air conditioning systems are designed to last 12-15 years without maintenance and 18 to 22 years with proper maintenance. If you find your 18 year old system needs repairs and you’re asking yourself what to do, here’s a good way to measure that decision. Do you want to put your money in the past and repair this AC with a temporary solution? Or do you want to invest in a modern, high-efficiency air conditioning system? If your repairs total above $500-$700, that can be a tough decision.
At Fox Family Heating and Air, we will never tell you what you should do because it’s your money and your budget, and only you know where you are with your finances. We are an HVAC repair company first. We want to get you back up and running as soon as possible and we will always be that kind of company.
To get a real look at the true cost of today’s air conditioner repair, think about this scenario:
- HVAC service call – $75
- HVAC repair – $595
- Future AC repairs – (on avg. $150 per year on older systems)
- Local HVAC rebates on new high efficiency system – $500-850 dollars
- Federal tax credit on new high efficiency HVAC system – $300 (2016)
- Cost of inflation per year on a new system – $150 per year
- Energy savings per year operating new high efficiency system – $100 (at least)
Now let’s say you are just wanting to hang on to this older system for three more years..
- $75 service call +
- $595 repair + ($150×3 years)
- future repairs +
- $500 rebate +
- $300 tax credit + ($150×3 years) for inflation +
- ($1003 years) in energy savings = $2670
Today’s $670 repair is actually going to cost you $2670 in “true cost” because you’re investing your money in the past and not the future. Plus your repair is only going to come with a one year warranty on it. Our repairs do come with a one year warranty but I’m not sure what other heating and air companies offer.
A new heating and air system is going to come with 10 year parts warranties and, if you chose to replace with us, 10 years labor warranty with a maintenance schedule. Most companies offer 10 years part warranty and 2 years labor on a new air conditioning system. Now we all know labor is the most expensive part of any repair, so you’re back to paying that company and arm and a leg for labor on a part that is under ten years old!
We’re a Repair Company First
We want to be ethical and tell you what’s really going on with your system and let you decide what you want to do about it. A lot of times Fox Family Heating and Air will replace the part on your system to get you back up and running today for $670. Then we’ll let you think about it for a month or two until you decide you want a new system. We will take that $670 repair and apply it towards the cost of your new system! This way you’re not out that extra money. This is just another way we’re trying to earn your trust and develop a long term relationship with you and your family.
We hope this helps you with your replace or repair decision. Text or call us anytime at 916-877-1577 to have a company that will leave the decision in your hands, rather than trying to force you into a new system.