Should You Replace or Repair Your HVAC?

Very few things are more frustrating than having a damaged HVAC system in the middle of summer or winter. Fortunately, most HVAC problems can easily be repaired with minimum costs. However, sometimes the repair costs may be so high that you’ll consider getting a new HVAC. 

If your HVAC is older than 10-15 years, has frequent breakdowns, and uses significantly more electricity, you need to replace it. The same applies if the HVAC repair cost is too high. However, consider repairing your HVAC if it’s still relatively new and cheap to repair. 

This article will discuss the factors to consider when deciding whether to repair or replace your HVAC system. It will also discuss the benefits of getting a new HVAC unit if repairs aren’t feasible. 

What To Consider When Repairing or Replacing Your HVAC Unit?

HVAC repairs may be costly, especially if an important part is damaged. If repairs are too costly or you’re tired of constantly repairing your HVAC, you may consider replacing the unit altogether. But before you buy a new HVAC unit or spend too much on repairs that won’t last, here are some factors to consider: 

Age of the Unit 

This is the first thing to consider whenever you’re faced with a repair or replacement dilemma. HVAC units are made to last at least 10 years, and they can work effectively for up to 25 years before they need to be replaced. If you have an older model, it may not make sense to spend on an expensive repair since the HVAC will need to be replaced soon. 

Another issue with repairing older HVACs is that the parts become rarer, and you’ll spend more on an old part than you would on repairing a new one. Also, older units are less efficient, and you’ll have to factor in the extra amount spent on energy bills if you choose to repair them. 

However, if you still have a warranty left on your HVAC or the unit is less than 10-15 years old, you can benefit from a repair. How long your HVAC lasts after a repair depends on the nature of the repair and the quality of the repair service. 

Read: Why HVAC Damper Keeps Getting Stuck Closed?

Cost of Repairs 

Even if your HVAC may last a few more years after you repair it, there’s no point in doing so if the repair cost takes up a significant part of the cost of a new HVAC. As a rule of thumb, you should replace the HVAC if the repair costs exceed half the cost of a new HVAC. However, if you have a large commercial HVAC system, even an expensive repair may seem feasible. 

The problem with expensive HVAC repairs is that there’s no guarantee of how long the system will work before it needs more repairs. On the other hand, getting a new HVAC will give you peace of mind for as long as the warranty lasts, so you’ll spend less over the same period. 

Read: How To Tell If HVAC Zone Damper Is Normally Closed Or Normally Open? 

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The HVAC Unit’s Performance

While you should always consider the HVAC unit’s age and repair costs, also pay attention to the unit’s performance before deciding whether a repair is worth it. If the HVAC has a few years of operation time left and the repair costs aren’t too high, but the unit isn’t giving the output that it used to, then getting a new HVAC is more feasible. 

If your utility bills are increasing significantly because the HVAC system has become less efficient, you may pay more on electricity bills than you would save with a more efficient HVAC. 

However, if the HVAC starts using less energy after a repair and has a good energy rating, you don’t need to replace it just yet. 

Read: Why HVAC Zone Damper Actuator Making A Clicking Noise? How To Troubleshoot?

How Often the HVAC Needs Repairing?

If it’s not the first or second time you’re repairing your HVAC, you should think twice before doing another repair. After several repairs, the HVAC’s performance will decrease, and it may not be feasible to keep on repairing it.  

In this case, the time between the repairs is important to consider. If the HVAC lasts a couple of years before needing another repair, then you can repair it again if there’s no major issue. 

However, if you need to repair it every second year or more than once a year, you may end up spending more on repairs than the cost of a new HVAC! 

Read: Should An HVAC Zone Damper Bleed Air?

Benefits of Replacing Your HVAC With a New Unit 

If it’s too expensive to repair your HVAC or the HVAC is too old, the best option is to replace it with a new one. The cost of replacing an HVAC system will depend on the type and size of the unit, its temperature control capabilities, and other features. 

While replacing your house’s HVAC system may be costly, you may actually save more in the long run with reduced energy bills or tax rebates from running a more efficient system. Here are some benefits to consider when getting a new HVAC: 

New HVACs Are More Efficient 

Newer HVACs are more energy efficient and will reduce your energy bill significantly. Studies have shown that smart HVAC systems use up to a fifth less energy if you use the thermostat timer. 

Modern HVAC systems are also more efficient overall, and most have an A+ energy rating. They are designed to accommodate very little energy waste due to better insulation and closed systems, and more efficient airflow systems. 

Lower Maintenance Costs  

While you’ll still have to do regular maintenance checks on a new HVAC, the cost of maintaining a new unit is much lower. On the other hand, older units require more maintenance and repair as the parts wear off, resulting in higher long-term costs. 

Possible Tax Rebates 

When you upgrade your HVAC system to a more energy-efficient one, you can take advantage of Federal tax rebates up to 10% of the total HVAC cost (with limits). This is on top of any rebates that your State may offer. 

So, if the high installation cost of a new unit is affecting your choice to buy one, this incentive may help. If you’re looking for an HVAC system for your apartment, the tax rebates will be more significant. 

Read: How Reliable Multi-Zone HVAC Systems Are?

New HVAC Units Are Safer From a Health Perspective 

HVAC systems are designed to filter the air from dust and other pollutants. This is helpful in winter when air pollutants are more concentrated. However, older systems don’t have the same quality air filtration systems, and their dust filters will also stop working when the HVAC gets too old. 

If the indoor air quality in your house is getting worse and the HVAC isn’t filtering out pollutants as it should, it’s time to get a new system. 

Better Resale Value 

You don’t have to use your HVAC until it’s completely useless. Experts recommend using an HVAC for 5-10 years and then reselling it to cover some of the costs of a new one. Newer HVACs have better resale value, making them more attractive if you plan to replace them after a few years. 

Final Thoughts 

If you can’t decide whether to repair your HVAC or get a new one, your HVAC is probably nearing the end of its life. If the repair costs are too high and the HVAC is already over 10 years old, it’s time to get a new one. 

New HVACs are more efficient, safer for your health, and require fewer maintenance costs. You can also get tax rebates if you’re upgrading to a more efficient HVAC.