10 Things You Need to Know Before Replacing Your Central Air Conditioning System

by Ben SanfordAugust 17, 2016

Installing a New Central Air Conditioning System

Maybe you’d like something a little more energy efficient. Perhaps you’ve added living space onto your home and you need something a little more powerful. Or, maybe your old model seems to be on its last legs.

Whatever the reason, replacing a central air conditioning system is a costly venture that should not be entered into lightly. Here are ten things you should consider before installing a brand new central air conditioning system in your home.
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1 – What are All of the Issues You Have With Your Current AC?

Before you even begin to start the shopping process for a new system, take some time and evaluate all the issues you have with your current system. This way, you’re less like to miss an important feature when you purchase your new AC.

2 – Could You Get Away With Simply Expanding or Repairing Your Current System?

Once you’ve evaluated all the issues you have with your current system, you are in a position to make a qualified decision about whether repairing or expanding might be just as good, and a much cheaper option. Many installers can provide you with options for expansion/repair alongside a quote for installing a completely new system.

3 – How Much System Do You Need?

This is really the big question. After all, what is the point of having central air if it doesn’t cool every room in the house to the temperature desired?

4 – How Much System Can You Afford?

Actually, this may be the bigger question. Sure, you could take out a second mortgage and buy something robust enough to chill every room in the house to near-freezing. But where’s the sweet spot between what you need and the most you can reasonably afford?

5 – What’s the Best Energy Efficiency You Can Get in Your Price Range?

Maybe this is the best way to approach both questions. After all, energy efficiency gets at the value for cost question from both ends.
replacing central air conditioning unit hvac

6 – How Important Is Energy Efficiency to You?

However, energy efficiency can sometimes come at a premium price while limiting the power of your system. Green is great, but finding a balance between efficiency, cost, and power is the ultimate goal here.

7 – What Else Would You Like the New System to Do?

These days, many systems come with several features beyond cooling. Additionally, installers can add on several other bells and whistles if you want them (and can afford them). Like when buying a new car, it’s best to know exactly what you want before you get dazzled by what’s possible.

8 – Have You Checked an Installer’s Credentials?

Ask for references. Ask to see their insurance and licensing paperwork. Check with your local Better Business Bureau and online forums for consumer complaints against them.

9 – Should You Get Multiple Installation Bids?

In a word: YES. Multiple installation bids can often weed out the incompetent and the over-inflated in one easy step, narrowing the field to the reasonable and reasonably competent at the same time.

10 – Should You Invest in a Programmable Thermostat?

In another word: YES. A programmable thermostat is a terrific tool for increasing energy efficiency without loss of power and at a minimal cost.

Enjoy a Worry-Free Cool Summer

Well, there you have it – a near-comprehensive list of ten things you should look into or consider before you sign off on the replacement of your central air conditioning unit. Plan the process carefully and you’ll be a enjoying a cooler, worry-free summer in no time.

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About The Author
Ben Sanford
Ben is a real estate agent and freelance writer. He's lived on the east coast his entire life and is just as "at home" on a snowboard as he is in the office. When not writing about local real estate markets and researching hot new tips for homeowners, he can be found working on his home renovation projects with help from his wife Melissa and their kids, Josh and Cheyenne.

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