You probably don’t want to spend the money on a new HVAC system, especially if your summer budget doesn’t account for the expense. However, it may become necessary if you want to stay comfortable in your Stuart, FL, home. If you’re noticing issues with your system, here are five signs you need a new HVAC system.
Age of HVAC System
When your HVAC system gets to the end of its lifespan, a replacement usually makes the most sense. Here are the following average life expectancies for each system:
- Central air conditioner: 10+ years
- Geothermal HVAC system: 25+ years
- Ductless mini-split: 10-30 years
The most durable systems tend to cost the most money, but the cost can pay off down the road. An initial investment now can save money in utility bills and on premature replacement in the long run.
You can prolong the age of your HVAC system by getting regular maintenance and following eco-friendly practices, such as using a smart thermostat and not setting the temperature too high or too low.
Every HVAC system runs at a certain efficiency level indicated by its SEER rating, with higher ratings meaning higher efficiency. You can find the SEER rating clearly labeled on every new unit, or you can find the SEER rating in your user manual. Keep in mind that efficiency can decrease with time.
Air conditioners with low SEER ratings will generally cost you more money in utility bills. Check for the following indicators of an inefficient air conditioner:
- High utility bills
- System running more often than usual
- Less comfortable temperatures
You can trust any new unit with an EnergyStar certification sticker to run at peak efficiency. To receive the certification, the unit must earn a SEER rating of at least 11, but the most efficient units can reach SEER ratings of 25.
Alarming Noises and Smells
Use your senses to determine your AC’s functionality. Most air conditioners make noise, but it shouldn’t get to the point of being distracting, especially if it grows louder over time. You also don’t want to smell anything coming from the system.
Your HVAC system may make noise due to the following reasons:
- Damaged components
- Debris blockage
- Clogged lines
If your HVAC system smells, take special notice of the type of smell. If you smell gas, you should shut the air conditioner off immediately and call for a replacement. A gas leak can put your family in danger, so don’t risk it. Musty smells may indicate a need for cleaning or drying, and a burning smell can indicate burning from components rubbing against each other.
Repair costs add up over time. At a certain point, you will save money by getting a replacement unit that won’t require multiple repairs. That point usually occurs at the time of the first major repair after the warranty runs out.
Uneven Temperatures in Home
Your bedroom feels like a sauna, but you need a sweater and socks when you’re working in your office. You might need to consider replacing your HVAC system.
Your system is probably short cycling. Short cycling is when your HVAC system frequently turns on and off. This usually happens when your system is too big for your home. Call a licensed technician so they can inspect your system.
Bad Indoor Air Quality
The air you breathe in your home runs through your HVAC system. If your HVAC system contains rust, dust, or other contaminants, you will breathe it in. Regular maintenance should remove most problematic particles, but some things, such as cigarette smoke, can linger for a long time.
Unless you want your entire family experiencing sinus and respiratory problems, you should get a new unit. When you get a new HVAC system, reduce moisture levels and prohibit indoor smoking.
Contact Grimes Heating & Air Conditioning to help you determine whether you should repair your air conditioner or replace the entire unit. We offer air conditioner services in Stuart, FL, including air conditioning repairs, installations, and maintenance.
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