Should I Replace My 15-Year-Old Air Conditioner?

June 23, 2021

With ample maintenance, your air conditioner will offer worry-free cooling for years. But, like any other machine in your home, it will at some point need to be upgraded. Knowing when to replace it is important to skip pricey repairs, expensive energy bills and interruptions to your comfort.

When it includes staying cool and your house’s energy efficiency, our Gilray Heating and Cooling professionals are looking out for your best interests. There’s a lot that goes into deciding when your air conditioner requires replacement. Here are a few aspects you should consider when you’re thinking about replacing your 15-year-old air conditioner.

Age

In most instances, the Department of Energy says many air conditioners run for 15–20 years. If yours is 15 years old, it’s well past the midpoint. It’s wise to start preparing for air conditioning installation before it wears out so you aren’t sweating while you’re waiting for a new one.

Trustworthiness

How dependable is your air conditioner? Does it cool dependably, even on the hottest days? Or is it routinely malfunctioning? When your air conditioner starts becoming less trustworthy it’s time to begin thinking about getting an upgraded one.

Repair Bills

Over your air conditioner’s lifetime, it’s normal for it to need a few little repairs. But if your air conditioner repair cost is more than half the cost of a new air conditioner, it’s wiser to just get a new one.

Energy Efficiency

Every air conditioner comes with a SEER rating, which rates how proficiently it consumes electricity to create chilled air. If your air conditioner was installed in 2006, it will be at least 13 SEER to meet federal laws. However, your air conditioner becomes less efficient as it wears out.

Today, 15–18 SEER is a popular number, but efficiency can go as high as the mid-20s. Air conditioners with higher SEER ratings are typically costlier but may pay for themselves over the years through more energy savings. And purchasing an energy-efficient air conditioner, especially one that’s an ENERGY STAR® air conditioner, can make you eligible for extra rebates.

Comfort

Are you cool when your air conditioner is on? Or are you often turning down the temperature to remain cool? An older air conditioner could struggle to keep your house comfy because of decreased efficiency. A modern air conditioner, particularly a variable-speed air conditioner, can lower high humidity and hot and cold spots. Instead of cooling at full speed constantly, these air conditioners operate at multiple speeds to adjust your comfort.

Noise

Your air conditioner should give cooling you can feel, not hear. If noise is annoying you, check with us about upgrading to a variable-speed air conditioner. Most of these air conditioners operate at a sound level that’s comparable to a normal conversation.

Smart Thermostat Compatibility

Adding a smart thermostat is a smart approach to maximize your energy efficiency, with very little effort needed from you. And, depending on the rebates offered by your utility company, you may be able to get a free smart thermostat or get one for very little. Many of these thermostats can learn from your temperature preferences and then develop an energy-efficient schedule to match. They also know when you’re at home or away and change temps as needed.

If you use an outdated air conditioner, a smart thermostat might not work with it. Upgrading your air conditioner is a smart way to ensure smart thermostat compatibility.

Refrigerant Type

If your air conditioner was installed before 2010, it probably runs on Freon®. Also known as R-22 refrigerant, Freon is no longer being produced as a result of its negative effects on the ozone layer. You can see if your air conditioner uses R-22 by checking the sticker on the outside unit, which will include the refrigerant type.

If your air conditioner is working fine, you can keep on using it. However, if it ever has a refrigerant leak, solving the problem will be costly. That’s since Freon is only available in decreased, recycled amounts.

Newer air conditioners run on Puron®, or R-410A. But you can’t just put Puron in a Freon air conditioner, because pressure requirements are different.

Our Professionals Make Air Conditioning Installation Stress-Free

If you’re still debating whether you should replace your 15-year-old air conditioner now, think over this. The Department of Energy says doing air conditioning replacement for a 10-year-old model can provide 25–40% in energy savings! And those savings can really build over time.

We are aware that air conditioner cost is your number one question. That’s why partnering with Gilray Heating and Cooling for air conditioning installation in Wausau and surrounding areas is simple and affordable. Our techs will help you find the right model for your needs and then go over all the possibilities. These include special offers to help you save more and financing for qualified customers to make your new air conditioner fit your budget.

Call us at 715-301-0727 to request your free, no-pressure estimate today!