So… you have either been told, or you suspect, that your air conditioner’s compressor is failing, and it could or already has caused your air conditioner to have a breakdown. The next question is, should you pay to have your AC fixed, or should you replace the system?
Before we provide an answer, we need to explain the role of your compressor to your air conditioner.
You may have seen us say that your thermostat is the brain of your air conditioner. Well, the compressor is the heart. It’s what allows the refrigerant process, so that your air conditioner actually does the job it was designed to do. When the compressor fails, the whole AC system fails with it. Sure, the fans may still run, but you won’t feel any chilled air coming through the vents.
“Okay, So Should I Repair My System or Replace It?”
The short answer to this is “it depends.” Replacing your entire air conditioner is usually the best, most financially sound decision, but not in all cases. Read on to learn more!
Repairing Your Air Conditioner (By Replacing the Compressor)
When a compressor breaks down, the only way to “fix” your air conditioner is to replace that particular component. And this may seem like your best option. After all, it’s more affordable than buying a whole new air conditioner, right? In some cases, yes, it’s the best option.
Consider your system’s manufacturer’s warranty. If it’s still good, then replacing the compressor makes sense–because you’ll only need to pay for labor, not the actual compressor. The reason this is important to note is because the compressor is actually the most expensive component of your air conditioner, and replacing the compressor in an aging system that’s about to fail anyway may not make much sense, if you have to pay for the component yourself.
In most cases, a compressor doesn’t fail until the air conditioner is quite old. A well-maintained and properly cared for air conditioner can last approximately 10-15 years, but if your system has already reached this age and the compressor has failed, it might be a good idea to upgrade instead of replacing just the compressor. Putting a new compressor in an old air conditioner means that even though you’ll have this one new component, other parts of your air conditioner will soon start breaking down and you’ll need to replace the system anyway.
A Case for Replacing the Whole Air Conditioner
As we mentioned above, a failed compressor is most likely to happen in an older air conditioner that’s falling apart anyway. Today’s air conditioners are much more efficient, plus they use the more modern and eco-friendly refrigerant.
But upgrading your air conditioner, you’ll save money on monthly costs and help the environment out too! Plus, if you decide to upgrade your air conditioner, you can find out what your various options are. For instance, could a variable speed central air conditioner benefit you? The only way to find out is to talk to a pro today!