Logan A/C and Heat Services offers tips to help homeowners.
It’s that time of the year when warmer temperatures move back into the Miami Valley and homeowners start thinking about turning on their air conditioner.
And for many with an older air conditioner the question may be: Will the air conditioner make it through the summer? Because the last thing anyone wants is for the air conditioner to malfunction during the hottest day of the year.
Logan A/C and Heat Services Marketing and Communications Director Amanda Kinsella says the lifespan of a typical HVAC system is about 12 to 15 years. For newer homes that have a “builder’s grade” system it may only last about 5 years, she says.
As a home’s HVAC system reaches the end of its typical lifespan it may still be able to perform some heating and cooling functions, but they will be slower, use more energy and may suffer more frequent breakdowns, says Kinsella.
So when does a homeowner know when to keep making costly repairs and when to invest in a new system? Kinsella says one of the best ways to know if it is time to replace a furnace is to take a look at the energy bills and compare the energy use to the same time in previous years.
If there is a large increase, or the energy bills have been steadily climbing higher the last several years, it can be a sign that it is time for a new air conditioner or furnace, she says. As air conditioners and furnaces get older their parts wear down and they become much less energy efficient, says Kinsella. It is the air conditioner and furnace’s way of warning homeowners that it’s time to think ahead, she says.
And one of the considerations homeowners might want to think about is the efficiency of a new air conditioner or furnace and how much money they might save with a new system. “Furnaces now can be up to 97 percent efficient so that means for every dollar you spend only 3 cents of every dollar is lost due to inefficiency,” says Kinsella. “So it makes a big difference.”
If a homeowner’s older air conditioner or furnace is only operating at 80 percent efficiency that means 20 cents of every dollar is lost due to inefficiency, she says. “On a dollar maybe it doesn’t make that much of a deal to you,” says Kinsella. “On $100 you know that $20 could have been saved just due to having a better efficient or a more efficient system.”
Another consideration for homeowners trying to decide whether to repair an older HVAC system or invest in a new air conditioner or furnace is the comfort level in the home, she says. “Do you have hot and cold spots? Do you have a hard to heat or cool area, especially cool in the summertime upstairs where it’s just maybe 10 to 15 degrees different from the main level to the upstairs?”
Other comfort considerations include a humid or damp home in the summer or extremely dry air in the winter, says Kinsella. Dry air in the home during winter can be fixed by installing a whole-house humidifier, she says.
“A proper working and a proper conditioned home means no dryness in the wintertime,” she says. “And think of all the health factors that that includes—dry itchy skin, dry brittle hair, sinus infections even bloody noses due to sinus infections because of dry air,” says Kinsella.
The extra moisture from a whole-house humidifier may not eliminate all those conditions, but it could certainly help those types of health concerns, she says.
If homeowners aren’t sure if they need to repair or replace their furnace or air conditioner Logan A/C and Heat Services offers free inspections, says Kinsella. “We take a look at what you already have in your home, we’ll take a look at your ductwork, the furnace, the air conditioner and then we’ll want to sit down and talk to you about some of these systems that we have and talk about your comfort levels and talk about the efficiency and savings that you could see with your new system,” she says.
In addition, company consultants can give homeowners an estimate for a new HVAC system right there on the spot. “You do not have to wait for us to mail you or email you anything,” says Kinsella.
Whether or not a homeowner buys a new furnace or air conditioner Kinsella says it’s important to keep the current HVAC system maintained on a routine basis in order to get a little longer lifespan out of it.
“We recommend getting a maintenance plan,” says Kinsella. “That includes a furnace tuneup in the fall and then an air conditioner tuneup in the spring.” A maintenance plan also includes 10 percent off on parts and labor if the HVAC system does malfunction, she says.
Now is a good time to have someone look at an HVAC system, says Kinsella. “April its really the time here in Ohio where we really should be starting to work on AC tuneups,” she says.
In addition, spring is when air conditioning and furnace manufacturer’s offer rebates and trade-in allowance on a limited basis, says Kinsella. “With our manufacturer Trane offering trade-in allowances or financing right now is a great time to save big on a new Trane system,” she says.
And homeowners don’t have to worry about the installation of an HVAC system taking too long. Most installations take a day or less, says Kinsella. “And we’ll work with you on the schedule. We’re here to help. That’s what we do.”