LittleFokker wrote:Also, as a Costco member, I was going to use their free assessment and estimate service, but I don't know the first thing about what to expect with buying a new air conditioner. What are the various brands, who is high quality, low quality, high price, low price, and the best combination of price and quality? About how much should I expect to pay for a whole new unit?
Thanks in advance for any replies.
BobPatterson wrote:Get a professional survey of your home's requirements, including any possible additions you might ever want to contemplate.
In Maryland I can get a free survey from the gas and electric utilities. Do both if possible. You will learn something from each.
Pay attention to Energy Star ratings and, of course, warranties.
Shop for prices. You might get the best deal from your utility company.
jetwet1 wrote:We bought our current house 7 years ago, gutted it and did a full remodel, the one thing we left alone was the AC unit, we had it checked and it was fine.
5 years later, it had a terminal failure, thankfully it was in November, so we had time to get a lot of estimates, most came in around $5k-$6k, a few were lower, a few were higher, however....LittleFokker wrote:Also, as a Costco member, I was going to use their free assessment and estimate service, but I don't know the first thing about what to expect with buying a new air conditioner. What are the various brands, who is high quality, low quality, high price, low price, and the best combination of price and quality? About how much should I expect to pay for a whole new unit?
Thanks in advance for any replies.
We got a Costco quote as well, they came in at $11k....And that was the special Costco members price...It's the only time I have ever told someone to "get the f**k out of my house"...
Anyways, we ended up going with the company Lowes uses out here and for one simple reason, Lowes backs up the warranty, if there is an issue with the company that installs the unit, Lowes is the fallback option.
The price ended up being around $5500, not the cheapest, but far from the most expensive, the service was excellent and Lowes sent someone round to follow up on the installation.
And to answer your question, it really depends where you live, if it's a hot place like here (Vegas), in the summer, sure, prices go up, time to actually get something done stretches, it's all supply and demand.
Ken777 wrote:Normally there are good deals a couple of times a year and IIRC the fall is one of those times. Going for both a new ac system and heating unit at the same time saves money and labor costs are reduced. Fall is also a good time for installing systems and checking ducting as the tradesmen will be working in a more comfortable space.
There are also rebates available from some utilities - both gas and electric. With your older unit you might have copper coils and that can get you a couple dollars.
Check with the BBB for ratings of suppliers, then use the internet for good and bad comments on possible companies.
flyingclrs727 wrote:In Texas a central AC compressor unit wouldn't last 25 years. When I was buying my house in 2014, the HVAC inspector discovered that there was zero pressure on the freon line, and the compressor was 18 years old. The home warranty company had already put a replacement compressor on a truck to my city, and my realtor told them there was no way I would agree to letting them install a new compressor that used R-22. The EPA is in the process of phasing out allowable production of R-22, and the price was beginning to go up sharply. Its well over $100 a pound now. Eventually the only source will be recycled R-22. I took the money offered by the warranty company, because I intended to completely replace both the compressor and heater/blower unit. I should have also taken the money for the ducts, because they needed replacing too rather than just being fixed.
If your compressor is really 25 years old, it probably is an R-22 system. You should replace all the mechanical systems both the compressor and blower/heater, because the older blowers don't work with R-410A. Get your ducts inspected to make sure they don't have mold. Also old ducts didn't have the same insulation R values required nowadays. New ducts have to conform to newer regulations. If your house is comfortable this summer, I would wait till fall or spring depending on weather to replace the system. If your system really is 25 years old, I would not wait till it breaks to replace it. A new Energy Star rated system will be much more efficient and save you lots of money on electricity bills. A system using R-410A will save lots of money, because older refrigerant gas is getting really expensive even if you can find it when the Freon needs to be topped off.
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