Sure, our cooling season is still a couple months away, but does that mean it’s too soon to start thinking about your cooling system? Certainly not, especially if you’re considering a Syracuse, UT AC replacement this year.
Now is the perfect time to explore your options and to schedule your installation appointment before the weather starts warming up to the point that you need your air conditioner on a regular basis. But what if you’re unsure whether or not you actually need a replacement—could you get by on another repair?
Consider the Age of the System
As long as it is well cared for—meaning, you don’t skip annual maintenance (or biannual, if you have a heat pump) and you keep up on your repair needs—your air conditioner should last about a decade. If your system is nearing this age and has had frequent problems, then a replacement is definitely a good consideration.
How’s the Efficiency?
Newly manufactured air conditioners are required to have a SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) rating of at least 13. If your AC system’s SEER rating is below this, then it is an older system that even without operational problems can’t possibly be performing as efficiently as a newer system would.
Do You Need a Large Repair?
Perhaps near the end of the last cooling season you were told you needed a large repair, and are still considering whether or not to invest in that, or replace the system entirely. A good rule of thumb to go by is if the repair is going to cost over half of what a new AC system would, the replacement is the superior choice.
Your AC Options
Once you do decide to replace your AC system, there are some additional considerations to make. You may be tempted to simply replace the system with an upgraded version of the same model—for example, a central system for a central system. There are a number of other options, however.
- Heat Pump: A heat pump works by transferring heat from one area to another. During the winter, the heat is brought from the outside into your living space, and during the summer it reverses the process to remove the heat from your home and return cooled air. This is a great 2-in-1 option, and a fantastic choice if you also need a new heating system.
- Geothermal System: This is another form of heat pump. However, instead of transferring heat from the air, it transfers it from the ground. Loops are buried under the earth and the system uses the earth as a heat source in the winter and a heat sink in the summer.
- Ductless Mini Split: The ductless mini split is another year-round system. It doesn’t require the use of ducts, as the name implies. Rather, you have an outdoor unit and then refrigerant lines that are run to the various air handlers throughout your home. This is a great way to achieve zoned cooling and heating for maximum efficiency.