Summer is just around the corner, so now is the best time to inspect or replace the air conditioner in your home. When it comes to the HVAC system, it always helps to be vigilant. Are you noticing insufficient cooling, excessive water leaks, or strange noises when the air conditioner is on? You need to get that fixed right away.
Small problems can lead to bigger problems later on. Your HVAC system could even completely fail in the middle of the hottest summer months. But is it time to replace it? Here are the telltale signs that you need to schedule an appointment with an HVAC repair expert before the problems get worse.
The Age of the System
Is your unit more than 10 years old? HVAC technicians will generally utilize the 5,000 rule to determine if it is time to repair or replace the air conditioner.
The rule is to take the age of the HVAC equipment and multiply that number by the estimated repair cost. If the result is more than $5,000, this means you should seriously consider replacing the entire system instead of settling for a repair. For example, if the age of the equipment is 10 years old and the repair cost is $300, the result is $3,000. This means it is acceptable to repair the unit.
However, if the heat pump or air conditioner is more than 10 years old, it’s better to replace it. This choice leads to fewer headaches in the long run. Also, new HVAC units with higher Energy Star labels will help you save up to 20 percent on heating and cooling costs.
Strange Noises or Unusual Odors
If you hear grinding, screeching, ticking, rattling, or buzzing noises when you operate the air conditioner, early diagnosis will help you save money on potential repair bills. The same can be said if the unit is blowing air with a musky or foul odor.
Strange noises can be caused by a clunky fan or loose internal components. The faster you act, the better it is for your wallet. Bad smells can be caused by dirt, mold, or mildew. If the unit is still blowing a foul aroma after replacing the filter, it is time to replace the unit.
Higher Energy Bills
Take a closer look at your most recent energy bill, and compare it with your bills from the past three to six months. Do you notice a spike in your energy bills? In the absence of other electrical-related problems, higher energy bills usually indicate that your HVAC system is overworked or inefficient. When the unit works harder to maintain the desired temperature, it will inevitably consume more power.
The time to act is now. Don’t wait for your air conditioning problems to worsen before you decide to call the experts. If your air conditioner needs to be repaired or replaced, never hesitate to schedule an appointment with a professional HVAC technician to get the most bang for your buck.