The Plain Truth from a Home Comfort Contractor:
Should You Repair or Replace?
Home comfort is a significant investment for homeowners in North Alabama. Even after you invest in the equipment, nearly half of your utility bill goes toward heating and cooling.
So, two things are going on here:
- Initial cost, and
- recurring costs of energy and maintenance.
Since initial cost is very high (and often the more expensive it is, the more efficient), some contractors may attempt to “sell” you a system based purely on energy savings.
Though an energy-efficient replacement is possibly a good idea, regular maintenance of your current system is far less costly. And there are smart ways to shop for a new system, versus merely expensive ways to shop.
Regular maintenance on your system maintains peak performance and energy efficiency. However, as systems age, breakdowns and poor performance will inevitably lead to a big question: “Should we repair or replace?” How can you make that decision?
3 Top Reasons to Strongly Consider Replacement
- Your heat pump or air conditioner is more than 10 years old. If you replace your unit with one that has earned the ENERGY STAR label, a new high-efficiency unit can save up to 20 percent on heating and cooling costs.
- Your furnace or boiler is more than 15 years old. While you’re probably not thinking heat during the heat of summer in the South, you’ll want to consider your whole system when replacing one or the other. An ENERGY STAR qualified furnace is 15% more efficient than a conventional furnace.
- You’re experiencing frequent repairs and escalating energy bills. Repair costs add up, plus your equipment may be costing you more in energy dollars by becoming less efficient.
4 Top Reasons to Strongly Consider an Accessory Upgrade Only
- Some rooms in your home are too hot or too cold. This could be caused by improper equipment operation, “air balancing” (which we can test quite easily), duct problems or weak insulation. All these are very fixable issues.
- Your home has humidity problems. If the air in your home is too humid in summertime – windows ‘sweating,’ doors ‘sticking,’ or a generally clammy feel - this could be from leaky ductwork (fixable), improperly sized-equipment, but we need to check it out. Dehumidifiers also work wonders.
- Your home has excessive dust. The buildup of dust could be worsened by leaky ducts that pull particles and air from attics, crawl spaces and basements, then distribute those particles throughout your house. Asthma and sinus sufferers may be suffering more than needed! Possible solution: seal your ducts, or get high quality filtration. Homeowners are regularly amazed at the difference this makes.
- Your heating or cooling system is noisy. The annoying and recurring noise of rumbling air, or ‘whistling’ could be the result of undersized ductwork, a problem with the indoor coil or improper air balancing. Fortunately, this annoyance can often be easily fixed.
Need fast answers to help make your home more comfortable? We’re just an email or phone call away. Schedule a free Home Energy Survey or just call! We’re here for you.