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Is It Time For A New Air Conditioner? How To Tell

Posted on May 6, 2022 by admin

As the weather heats up and summer arrives, many Midwest homeowners start thinking about cranking up their air conditioner unit, following its long winter slumber.  However, if your A/C unit needs to be replaced and you don’t know it, you could end up spending a lot more than you should on a unit that still won’t adequately cool your home during the sweltering months ahead. Here are some signs that every homeowner should be aware of; indications that it may be time to put your A/C unit to pasture and invest in a new one. This article is brought to you by Lancaster Brothers Heating & Cooling, providing top-notch HVAC services to Kansas City metro homeowners for over 22 years.

Listen for Strange Noises

If you hear an abnormal noise or noises coming from your air conditioner, it might be time to replace it. Normal operating sounds include a whirring or clicking sound that indicates that your AC unit is running smoothly. Likewise, some units make noises when they are turned on and/or off, such as a pop or whistle. If, however, your air conditioner is making noises while it’s running, that may be an indication that some of the unit’s key components are malfunctioning. The following noises while your unit is running could mean serious problems for your air conditioner:

  • Continuous loud pops or bangs
  • Loud, noticeable whistling
  • Squealing
  • Grinding
  • Scraping
  • Rattles

If you hear any of these types of noises during the regular running of your A/C unit, contact a professional heating & cooling company right away. Lancaster Brothers Heating & Cooling offers fast, friendly repairs and can assess your A/C system with a diagnosis for repairs or replacement.

Weak Air Flow

If your air conditioner’s airflow seems weak, it could be a sign that it’s time to replace it. A healthy air conditioner should be able to cool your home after it’s been running for a bit. It shouldn’t take forever to cool your home to a comfortable temperature. You can also check the air flow by standing near air vents when your unit is running. You should feel a strong flow of cool air coming from the vents. If you don’t, it could be that your air ducts are blocked and it’s best to call in an HVAC professional to assess the problem. Weak air flow can also be a sign that the unit’s fan motor has gone bad. A professional can diagnose the situation and give you your options.

High Energy Bills

Have you noticed a sudden spike in your home’s energy bills? If your energy bills have been increasing, your air conditioner might be the culprit. An older unit has to work much harder to cool your home, which causes an increase in energy used to run it, which ends up costing a homeowner more to run it. Additionally, older air conditioners often have trouble cooling a home sufficiently. This can lead to you lowering the thermostat more often, and increasing your energy bills.

Most newer air conditioning units are exceptionally energy-efficient, specifically those with high seasonal energy efficiency ratios. There are also various government and utility companies that offer incentives like tax credits and rebates for the homeowner to upgrade to a more energy-efficient air conditioner. If you have an old air conditioner, replacing it with an energy-efficient one is a great way to save on your energy bills and help the environment.

Consider The Age Of The Unit

The average lifespan of an air conditioner is about 10-15 years, even when maintained at the highest standards. If your AC is approaching this age, it may be time to consider replacing it.

Newer air conditioning units are more energy-efficient and will solve many of the problems associated with your aging air conditioning unit. An old air conditioning unit can contribute to poor air quality in your home, and it can lead to uneven cooling and frequent breakdowns. If you’re faced with continuous and expensive repairs for a unit that’s soon to be outdated, it may be a fiscally wise decision to replace the failing unit.

Frequent & Costly Repairs

You might find that you need to book a repair after repair with your old air conditioner, in which case you should take a close look at whether these repairs are making any noticeable difference or if they’re just a waste of your money.

If you have an air conditioner with an expired warranty and needs a major repair or replacement part, the cost could very well be equivalent or pretty close to replacing the entire unit. Rather than the repeating cycle of paying for repairs, consider replacing the unit that is past its prime. In many cases, the money saved when recurring repairs are eliminated coupled with lowered energy bills results in a new air conditioner being a smart investment and more budget-friendly in the long term.

Next Steps

If your air conditioner shows any of the signs listed above, it’s time to call in the experts. Lancaster Brothers Heating and Cooling can help you with a diagnosis of your air conditioner unit’s problems and options for repair or replacement. Give us a call at (913) 851-3399 or contact us via our website to schedule your HVAC system analysis. We want you to be cool and comfortable in your home this summer! 

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