Now that the cold weather is seeping back into southwest Ohio, you’re probably not spending too much time thinking about your air conditioner. Your AC made it through another long summer and you figure you can put it out of your mind till next spring. However, if you’ve had your air conditioning system for more than 10-12 years and have been thinking about upgrading, this time of year can be an ideal time to consider a replacement system.
Here’s some good reasons why the off-season can be a good time to invest in an AC replacement:
• In the off-season, just because of supply and demand, prices are likely to be lower than if you wait till next April. As the weather warms up, so does people’s interest in upgrading their AC systems. Even waiting till mid-winter could be problematic because many HVAC contractors have already started replacing their inventories with newer, pricier ACs and heat pumps in preparation for the spring rush.
• This time of year, AC installers will have an easier time putting in a new system if it’s located in an attic that gets very warm during the hot months. A quicker installation could mean a lower price.
• If you think your air conditioner is hovering near the end of its useful service life, you might save yourself a lot of trouble by replacing it now rather than waiting till next spring when the sudden heavy usage might just push it to its breaking point. You don’t want to be stuck with a busted AC once the weather starts getting hot.
Good Advice Whenever You’re Upgrading Your AC
Whenever you decide to replace your home’s cooling system, it’s important to remember the following:
1) Shop with a trusted, reputable HVAC contractor that will take extra time to make sure you get the AC that’s right for your home and family, especially with regard to proper sizing. If an AC isn’t correctly sized for your home, you could find yourself with lower efficiency, higher costs and reduced comfort.
2) Discuss with your contractor what level of energy efficiency you’ll want in a new AC (energy-efficient cooling systems cost more than less-efficient systems but result in lower bills from month to month). Climate is another factor that should be discussed when deciding on the efficiency level of a new cooling system.
3) Ask your contractor what sort of advanced features will improve cooling performance and efficiency at a reasonable cost. You may have the option of adding a whole-house humidity control or air-cleaning system.