Most homeowners don’t think about their HVAC system needing repair too often. How often do you think about your HVAC system? For most homeowners, it’s hardly a blip on the radar until it breaks down, leaving you sweating buckets in the summer, shivering in the winter, and scrambling to find the funds for an expensive repair.

An HVAC system is one of the best investments you make in your home. While you obviously want to keep it running as long as possible, it’s important to understand when it’s time for an upgrade.

The heating, air conditioning and plumbing professionals at Green Apple Mechanical NJ are here to share some red flags for when it’s time to replace your home’s HVAC system.

1. Your utility bills keep climbing

While it’s normal to spend more on utilities when you’re trying to cool your home in the summer, your bill shouldn’t be significantly higher than it was in the same month last year.

Rising utility bills can be a sign that you need to replace your HVAC system. “The efficiency of the system reduces over time from normal wear and tear. It’s the buildup of dirt and corrosion on the inside that causes the greatest loss of efficiency.

You can expect the efficiency of your system to drop 5-10% as it ages. However, if you notice a spike in your energy bills, it’s worth asking a Green Apple technician to take a look at your HVAC system to see if something’s wrong. If it requires extensive repairs, you might be better off investing in a complete replacement to maximize the efficiency of your home.

2. You have uneven temperatures throughout your home

Your kitchen is freezing, but you start sweating as soon as you enter the living room. Why can’t your HVAC system maintain a consistent temperature throughout your entire home?

A system that’s too large for the home can do short cycling. The temperature gets satisfied in the house too quickly, and it causes the system to turn off. “The humidity will remain, though, and it will feel stickier and warmer in parts of your home. A new air conditioning system with today’s technology would help you not have those swings of hot and cold.

 It’s also worth looking into your ductwork if you have uneven temperatures.

The ductwork is what carries warm and cool air to each individual area in the home. It’s very important that whoever comes out to replace your HVAC system look at the ductwork to make sure it can handle the amount of air that the system needs to move.

3. Your HVAC system runs constantly

In the dog days of summer, your air conditioning system might kick into overdrive to keep your home comfortable. But an air conditioner that won’t turn off on a regular day might need some attention.

It’s a good indicator that the air conditioner doesn’t have the capacity it used to have, said Hughes. It could be impacted with all this dirt that needs to be removed and have everything cleaned and rebuilt. Or it could be that the compressor (the heart of an air conditioning system) isn’t functioning as well as it should.

Even if you’re happy with the temperature in your home, you’ll probably be less than thrilled with the added costs of an HVAC system that’s always on. Replacing it could help make your home more efficient.

4. Your HVAC system is getting old

Ask how long your HVAC system is supposed to last, and your technician might not have an exact answer.

It really depends on how well it was installed and how well it’s taken care of. It’s reported that the average air conditioning system needs to be replaced every 15 years, but that also takes into account systems that fail in six years, and ones that last 20 years.

It’s not usually worth spending the money to repair a system that’s on its last legs, especially if it uses R22 refrigerant, as that’s been completely phased out in 2020.

It’s like trying to repair a tape deck instead of streaming. You have to think about whether you’re repairing something that’s going to be obsolete, even in its repaired state.

5. You spend a lot on repairs

Keeping your HVAC system running properly will require occasional maintenance over time.

Things like the capacitor, which is like the battery, or the contactors, which are like electrical switches, are basic repairs.  When you get into leaks in the coils or the compressor starts giving you issues, those are big repairs and you wouldn’t necessarily want to do it.

If you receive repair estimates that exceed what you hoped to spend, you might want to think about investing that money into a replacement. A new HVAC system will not only help you make the most of your home improvement budget, but it will keep your house comfortable no matter what the weather report says.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your HVAC needs call Green Apple Mechanical & Plumbing toll-free @888-611-7191. Green Apple Mechanical & Plumbing NJ has been serving the New Jersey area for years with professionalism and expertise. Customer service and care are always our main priorities.

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