Should I repair my system or replace it. Read the following carefully, then you make the decision.
Energy Efficiency is the KEY
The efficiency of air conditioning units is measured by the SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) rating which rates energy use for different types and brands of equipment. SEER ratings are a lot like vehicle miles per gallon efficiency ratings. The higher the rating, the more efficient the unit-and the more money saved in energy costs. The majority of systems installed before 1992 are rated at 10 SEER or below and continue to drop in efficiency with age. The chart below shows the possible energy savings as compared to an 8 SEER system. When all of the components of your heating and cooling system are properly combined in what is called a “matched system,” they work seamlessly together to deliver maximum performance at a minimal cost, examined air conditioning manufacturers’ efficiencies versus the actual efficiencies that resulted after installation and found that 90% of newly installed units exhibited some sort of energy-wasting, comfort-robbing problem.
Consider installing ENERGY STAR qualified heating and cooling equipment?
If your HVAC equipment is more than 10 years old or not keeping your house comfortable, have it evaluated by a professional HVAC contractor. If it is not performing efficiently or needs upgrading consider replacing it with a unit that has earned the ENERGY STAR. Depending on where you live, replacing your old heating and cooling equipment with ENERGY STAR qualified equipment can cut your annual energy bill by as much as 40%.You also invest in making sure that you have addressed the big air leaks in your house and the duct system. Sometimes, these are the real sources of problems in addition to your HVAC equipment.
When is it time to replace?
Certain telltale signs indicate it’s time to consider replacing heating and cooling equipment, or improving the performance of your overall system. It may be time to call a professional contractor to help you make a change if:
Your heat pump or air conditioner is more than 10 years old.
Consider replacing it with a unit that has earned the ENERGY STAR label. Installed correctly, these high-efficiency units can save up to 20 percent on heating and cooling costs.
Your furnace or boiler is more than 15 years old.
Consider replacing with an ENERGY STAR qualified furnace, which is 15% more efficient than a conventional furnace. If you have a boiler, consider replacing with an ENERGY STAR qualified boiler that is 5% more efficient than a new, standard model.
Your equipment needs frequent repairs and your energy bills are going up.
Your cooling or heating equipment my have become less efficient.
Some rooms in your home are too hot or too cold.
Improper equipment operation, duct problems or inadequate insulation could be the cause. No one is home for long periods of the day and you do not have a programmable thermostat. Install a programmable thermostat or have a good contractor install one and instruct you on its use to start saving energy and money while they’re away or sleeping.
Your home has humidity problems.
Poor equipment operation, inadequate equipment, and leaky ductwork can cause the air to be too dry in the winter or too humid in the summer. Your home has excessive dust. Leaky ducts can pull particles and air from attics, crawl spaces and basements and distribute them throughout your house. Sealing your ducts may be a solution.
Your heating or cooling system is noisy.
You could have an undersized duct system or a problem with the indoor coil of your cooling equipment.