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Repair or replace?
Purchasing a new HVAC system is a major commitment as well as a major source of stress for any homeowner. As with our vehicles, we tend to try and “stretch” the life of a system to its maximum before purchasing a new one. However, repair bills and increased energy usage will typically end up costing more in the long run than simply replacing the unit. This leaves you with a choice: to repair or to replace?
We can put your mind at ease about purchasing a new system, making your decision easy and cost-efficient. A simple diagnostic allows us to give you an expert opinion on what choice is right for your home. If a new unit is necessary, we can design the system that best fits your needs and budget and since we are Dave Lennox Premier Dealers you can be confident that you are making the right decision by choosing
Dorton's Heating & Air.
Some of the questions you should ask
yourself when deciding whether to replace your system or continue to repair it:
How old is my equipment?
Like any other machinery, HVAC units have a limited lifespan. Once your unit reaches its 10th birthday, it is time to start considering its condition and keeping an eye out for replacement opportunities.
How much are the repair bills?
If major repairs have become a regular event, you should seriously consider replacing the unit. Repairs of more than a few hundred dollars are often a sign of worse to come and will quickly exceed the cost of a new system.
What was the original SEER of the unit?
Energy efficiency is a hidden factor in the cost of a unit. If your system is not a recent purchase, it is probably using an outdated standard of efficiency – meaning that you’re paying more on your electric bill than you would with a new unit. See below for more on SEER ratings.
How much could I save on my utility bills?
Even a unit with a high SEER rating will become inefficient over time. Consider your current electric rates and how often you run the system. This is especially important during the summer and winter, when the unit is at its most active and sustains the most wear and tear.
Is the system the right size for my needs?
Over time, the structure of your home may change. You might have added additional square footage, finished the garage or basement, or made modifications to the airflow inside the home. Consider whether the unit is conditioning the same amount of space that you bought it for – and whether this might lead to further breakdowns.
Anyone who is looking to buy a new HVAC system should be familiar with SEER standards. SEER, which stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, is a measurement of your unit’s electrical efficiency. In short, it is an indication of how much electricity you will have to buy in order to power your system.
In 2006, the U.S. Department of Energy raised the minimum SEER requirement from 10 to 13, establishing a new standard in energy efficiency nationwide. This has both positive and negative effects on you, the buyer. The upside is that your new unit will be 30% more efficient than the old 10-SEER models, saving you $300 or more per year in electricity; the downside is that cheaper 10-SEER units are no longer on the marketplace.
If you own a 10-SEER unit, you may find it cost-efficient in the short term to keep it running with regular maintenance and repair. However, it will eventually reach the end of its lifespan and you will need to convert up to a minimum of 13-SEER. Units with SEER ratings of 21 or higher are also available at a cost premium over the standard units.
Dorton's Heating & Air has a team of HVAC professionals who can diagnose your needs, help find the right system for you, and install it with the highest level of workmanship.
To consult an expert, call (704) 226-0900 or fill in and submit Estimate Request Form below.