Things To Consider Before Replacing Your HVAC Units
All good things come to an end and your HVAC system is no exception. Decreased performance, lost efficiency, and weird noises may have already brought you to Google for queries like when to replace your HVAC system, best HVAC systems in US, new HVAC systems, or other popular chants in the category.
Replacing HVAC systems, however, requires some things to be taken into consideration. The average life of a heating and cooling system is somewhere between 10 and 15 years. As it begins to wear & tear, the cost of repairing HVAC systems starts going through the roof.
Also, it’s not always about the age of the system, sometimes it is the frequency and intensity with which it has been working. Some winters and summers can be more intense than others, dictating how hard the heating and cooling system has to work.
If the cost of repairing has gone too high or you are not happy with your system's performance, it's time that you invest in a new HVAC System. Here in this article, we have some tips to help you make the right decision.
When should you replace your HVAC System?
Air conditioners get worn out with time and at some point, replacing your old equipment is more time & cost-effective than repairing it.
You can start by determining what type of HVAC system you own at the moment, so it is easier to list down what needs to be bought. You may want to consider questions like:
What kind of house or building do you reside in?
If you live in a traditional house, it is easier to buy any ductless mini-split with the same SEER value and BTU values. However, if you are a facility manager at a school, hotel, or a hospital, the installation can be rather complex and would require detailed inspection and analysis. These systems are specific to the type of building and they are not interchangeable.
What type of HVAC system do you own right now?
Find out what type of heating and cooling unit you currently have. If it’s a conventional split system with an indoor furnace and an outdoor condenser, the requirements for a new one will be completely different compared to an all-in-one packaged unit that is installed on a pad or your property’s roof.
Proper information about these aspects will influence the cost of the new unit.
Is the new HVAC system powerful enough for the area?
Ductless air conditioners are perfect heating & cooling solutions for your homes & offices. However, these HVAC systems will only perform well if they are the right size w.r.t the room.
If the unit is too big, it will result in power wastage and increased bills. Too small and you won’t be able to reap the heating or cooling benefits of your HVAC system. So how to determine the right size according to the room? The chart below shows the ideal HVAC system (in terms of BTU) for your room size in sq feet.
|Ductless AC Sizing Chart W.R.T Area Size|
|Area Size (sq. ft)||BTU|
|150 - 300||6000|
|300 - 500||9000|
|400 - 650||12000|
|500 - 800||15000|
|600 - 1000||18000|
|800 - 1300||24000|
|1000 - 1650||30000|
|1200 - 2000||36000|
|1400 - 2300||42000|
|1600 - 2650||48000|
|1850 - 3100||56000|
Where is your system installed?
Is it in the basement, the attic, or somewhere else?
This will allow you to determine the HVAC system’s flow direction. For example; upflow for the basement and horizontal if it’s in the attic. Closets, on the other hand, can be challenging because they indicate up or downflow according to the location of your room’s air vents, but normally, ceiling vents show upflow, and the ones on the floor show downflow.
A packaged HVAC system, however, can be positioned and installed in a variety of ways.
What kind of fuel does it run on?
Gas-powered HVAC systems are usually more cost-effective. But if electricity-powered heat strips are your only option, it is advisable to invest in heat pumps. Heat pumps are significantly more power-efficient than heat strips.
What kind of round pipe is used - Metal or Plastic?
This information will indicate the system’s efficiency and help you with replacing the HVAC system.
A circular plastic flue pipe results in 92% or higher efficiency. It is crucial to seek technical services of an expert HVAC contractor to install the right flue pipe type. Wrong flue pipe installation can lead to system damage and health issues due to Carbon monoxide poisoning. Do not attempt to install it yourself.
Read: How to Choose the right HVAC contractor?
Now that you have decided to replace your HVAC system, it is also a good idea to take the unit’s efficiency under consideration. Especially if it is older than 10 years.
There’s good news in this regard though. Most latest furnaces and AC’s are more power-efficient than their predecessors. However, it is vital to understand how geography and efficiency are related.
So if you live in a warmer part of the country and the electricity bills are consistently on the rise, it is advisable to opt for a high-efficiency solution. On the other hand, if you’re located close to the Northern or Southern poles, an efficient furnace will be your best bet.
Now that you have listed all the important points, you’re good to go. But remember to consult professionals before replacing your HVAC system.