If your air conditioner isn't working as well as it used to, you may be wondering if you need to replace your system or if a good repair will do the trick. While a repair may fix the problem for a while, however, there are many times when replacing the entire system may be best. Check out these three factors that can help you determine if you should replace or repair the system.
1. The Age of the System
To start determining if you should replace or repair your system, calculate the age of the air conditioner. Most central air conditioning units last about 12 to 15 years. Therefore, depending on the age and how well you've maintained the system (or the previous owners maintained the system), it may be more cost effective to just replace the system.
A repair may get you through one or two summers, but it won't fix the problem. Older systems may also still be using R-22. This older refrigerant was once commonly used in air conditioners, but it is dangerous for the environment. Because of the new laws regarding this type of coolant, repairing a system that uses it may be more expensive.
2. The Size of the System
Regardless of the age of your system, it may simply be the wrong size. If you aren't sure of the size of your house or what size system you need, you may end up buying one that is too small or too big. If your system is too small, it likely can't get your home cool enough during the summer. If your system is too big, your home gets cold, but the system cycles frequently because it cools the home so quickly.
While this may seem like a nice feature, it actually puts strain and stress on the system, which leads to more breakdowns. If your system is the wrong size and getting older, replacing it may be the right choice, but if it's still new and has few problems, a repair could work.
3. The Overall Behavior of the System
Finally, pay attention to the usual behavior of your system. For the past few years, have you needed constant repairs, or has the system shut off at random times? If so, you are likely wasting money on all those repairs. Getting a new system now may be more expensive, but you'll save money because it won't need repairs as frequently.
Also, pay attention to new odors or noises. While some may be normal because of wear and tear, others may indicate a repair is necessary. If you don't usually have trouble with your system, it may simply be time for a good service and repair.
If your air conditioner doesn't seem to be as effective as it used to be, or it keeps breaking down, you may need to replace or repair it. If you would like more information regarding air conditioner repair or maintenance, contact a company like Estes Heating & Air Conditioning today.