How to Determine If Your Air Conditioner Needs to Be Replaced

If you are in the market for buying a new air conditioner, then one of your first concerns is whether or not your old system will work properly with the new unit. It can be frustrating trying to find compatible parts, but it’s possible. And if you don’t need to replace your current AC, some things can be done to prolong its life.

The age of the system is a major factor in determining if your air conditioner needs replaced. If your AC was put in before 1993, you likely need a new unit because newer models are more energy-efficient and have better features.

If you’ve already determined that your older model needs to be replaced, you now need to figure out how long it will last. The average life of a central air conditioner is 15 years. If it’s older than that, then your best bet is to replace it before it breaks down and leaves you without functioning AC in the middle of summer.

It would help if you also considered whether or not your current system is too large or too small for your home. A too big unit will short cycle, meaning it turns on and off rapidly to compensate for the high volume of air being moved by the system. This is not good for your AC because you are wearing it out faster.


If you have a unit that is too small, it will not provide enough airflow throughout your entire house. You’ll end up with some hot rooms and others that are cold, which is bad for energy costs and comfort.

If you find yourself experiencing any of the common problems listed below, then it’s likely time to replace your AC. Many older units will cause problems like these. Still, if they come on suddenly and more frequently than normal, there is likely an underlying issue with your AC that can significantly reduce its lifespan.

Weak Cooling Capability: If your air conditioner has to work harder and longer than it used to cool the space down, this could be a sign that the system is struggling to work properly. The unit may also start cooling less efficiently in certain rooms of your house.

Strange Noises: Air conditioners should not make loud noises like grinding or squealing when running. If you hear these sounds, something may be wrong with your compressor, and it would be wise to get it looked at.

A Musty Smell: If your air conditioner smells like mould or mildew, this may mean there is a leak in the unit and water is getting inside the vents. This can cause more problems than just a bad smell, so you should contact a professional as soon as possible if you notice this occurring.

Erratic Temperature: If you find that your AC is suddenly cooling some rooms and not others, then it’s likely time to replace the system. This can also occur if you notice a drop in efficiency over time because of repeated short cycling of the unit or increased energy usage, even though nothing has changed with the way you use the AC.

Frequent Repairs: A unit that malfunctions frequently has gone past its lifespan and will need replaced sooner rather than later (unless you enjoy spending money on repairs, then by all means). If your air conditioner constantly needs minor repairs, then it’s time to consider replacing the system instead of just continually throwing money at something that isn’t working properly.

These are some things you can look for when deciding whether or not your AC needs replaced. You’ll need to consider all of these issues and then determine how they affect the performance of your system before making a final decision about what you should do next. If it’s determined that your current AC can no longer provide you with the comfort and energy savings you expect, then it’s time to consider replacing it.

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