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Nordstrom Heating & Air, Inc Blog

Fix or Replace Your AC? Here’s How to Tell

Your air conditioner has been through the thick of it with you. When it needs repairs, you hop to it quickly, and then all’s right with the world. But this time, your technician quotes you a number that makes you do a double-take.

How could the repair be that high? It comes down to age and wear and tear. Let’s talk about why that repair might be better off as air conditioning replacement instead, or if it’s actually worth fixing it up right now.

First, the 50% Rule for Replacement

If your air conditioner’s repair bill costs 50% of the total price of a brand new installation, then chances are you’d be better off just replacing the whole thing. That sounds extreme, but there are a few reasons for it.

For one, there’s a certain level of damage that can’t just be fixed with a technician visit. It’s wear and tear: unavoidable degradation plus time.

Keeping your air conditioner in good standing with timely repairs and sufficient maintenance is how you slow that march of time, but it can’t be stopped. Eventually, it has to be replaced, and depending on the repair quote you were just given, that time might be right now.

Air Conditioners Have 10–15 Years

Any air conditioner has the chance to last a long time, but on average, they have 10–15 years worth of life in them. A clean maintenance schedule and minimal operability can contribute to a longer life, but it’s not a guarantee at any point.

This is why you should be saving money for a replacement as soon as possible. You can wait until the ten-year mark of your AC’s lifespan if you’d like, but you never want to be blindsided with a replacement if you can avoid it.

There Are Special Cases

Sometimes the odds aren’t in your favor, and an unfortunate breakdown happens to a newer air conditioner. At that point, an expensive repair bill might be worth it if it poses more than a couple years worth of life being added to your air conditioner’s expectancy.

It’s a little difficult to tell if this is the right path, which is why it’s important to have an HVAC technician figure it out for you. There’s one more thing to consider…

An Argument for Energy Efficient Upgrades

Let’s say your AC breaks down and the bill isn’t 50%, but it’s certainly higher than you were expecting. What should you do?

The 50% rule isn’t a hard-and-fast law; it’s just a recommendation to help save stress and money. But let’s think about your monthly energy expenditure and how much those monthly bills truly cost you.

In some cases, this might be a good opportunity to upgrade to a better air conditioner with superior energy efficiency. This way, you can lower your monthly energy costs and have a renewed lifespan on your home cooling.

Repair or Replace, What Do You Do?

You can repair that old AC, or you can consider replacing it depending on the bill and your current energy efficiency. It’s all in your hands, but it’s a tough decision that needs to be made when your AC is currently down for the count. We can help.

Contact Nordstrom Heating & Air, Inc today to schedule your air conditioner repair or replacement as soon as possible.

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