Did your home’s air conditioning system just conk out on you? Or do you strongly suspect that it might give out on you any day now?
If so, you’re going to want to have your AC system replaced ASAP. But before you do, you should take the time to learn about how much a new central AC costs to install.
Most people end up paying somewhere between $3,500 and $4,000 for a new AC system. But your AC installation cost could also be a whole lot higher than that in certain instances.
Your total AC replacement cost is ultimately going to be based on a wide range of factors. Today, we’re going to speak further about these factors so that you know what to expect when your AC installation company starts punching numbers into their AC cost calculator.
Here are several key factors that are going to help determine your central AC costs.
What Kind of Central AC System Do You Want?
When you’re in the market for a new central AC system, one of the first things you’re going to have to do is figure out what kind of central AC system you want. There are two main types of central AC systems that you can choose from.
- Split systems
- Packaged units
Split systems are the central AC systems that you’ll find in most homes. They have a cabinet situated outside of a home with a condenser and a compressor in it, and a cabinet situated inside of a home with an evaporator in it.
However, packaged units are also an option for many homeowners. They have a condenser, a compressor, and an evaporator all situated in a cabinet that sits outside of a house. More often than not, it’s positioned on the roof of a home, though it can also be set up on a concrete slab down on the ground.
Most people tend to go with split systems for their homes. But you should weigh both of your options to see which one is going to be your best bet.
How Big Does Your Central AC System Need to Be?
Regardless of which type of central AC system you go with for your home, it’s going to be very important for you to pick one out that’s the right size. You don’t want to invest in a central AC system that’s too big or too small since they could both pose problems.
If your central AC system is too big, it’s going to cycle on and off too often throughout the course of a day. This is going to send your energy bills skyrocketing and make it a struggle for you to keep your house cool.
If your central AC system is too small, it’s going to stay on almost all the time and drive your energy bills up that way. It’s also going to have a tough time getting your house down to an acceptable temperature.
You’ll need to find a central AC system that is the perfect size for your home. It’ll keep your home as cool as you want it to be without breaking the bank.
How Efficient Would You Like Your Central AC System to Be?
While you’re in the process of shopping around for a new central AC system, you’re going to notice that all AC units come with what is called a SEER rating. SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, and it’s a rating that spells out how efficient that a central AC system is.
You should compare the SEER ratings that you find on central AC systems and see which ones have the highest ratings. The higher that a central AC system’s SEER rating is, the more energy-efficient that it’s going to be.
Ideally, you’re going to want to invest in a central AC system with the highest SEER rating possible. It’s going to save you money over the long run and reduce your home’s carbon footprint.
But you’re also going to want to take note of how a SEER rating can impact how much a central AC costs. You might need to prepare to pay a little extra to get your hands on an AC system with an acceptable SEER rating.
Who Do You Want to Install Your Central AC System?
Buying and installing a new central AC system for your home isn’t going to be something that you can do on your own. You’re going to need to find a reputable AC repair and installation company in your area to help you.
Fortunately, it shouldn’t be too difficult at all to track one down. There are well over 100,000 of these companies scattered throughout the country right now, which means there should be at least a few good options in your general area.
You should call around to at least a few different companies to see what the AC replacement cost will be through them. By doing this, you should be able to find out which companies will extend the best prices to you overall.
How Soon Do You Need to Install a Central AC System?
In a perfect world, you don’t want to wait until the very last minute to replace a central AC system. You’re going to be asking for trouble if you do since you’ll have to pay a pretty penny to have a company come out to your home to install a new system for you.
Instead, you want to look out for the signs that will show that your central AC system is on its last legs and plan to replace it. By planning ahead, you’ll give an AC installation company plenty of notice and avoid them having to rush right over to your home to install a new central AC system for you.
This is a very simple way to make your central AC costs more manageable. You’ll be able to keep them on the lower end of the spectrum simply by doing some planning in advance.
How Difficult Will It Be to Install a Central AC System?
As long as you hire an AC installation company that knows what they’re doing, they shouldn’t have too much trouble ripping your old central AC system out and putting a new one in its place. It’s what they do all day long, so it should be a relatively easy job for them.
But there are some instances in which replacing your old central AC system with a new one is going to prove to be more challenging than usual for them. If, for example, the outside cabinet for your central AC system is difficult to access, that could make installing a new AC system harder than it has to be.
Your AC installation company is also going to run into problems if the concrete slab for your outside cabinet is cracked, not level, or damaged in some other way. You’re going to have to pay them a little bit more than normal to have them install a new central AC system for you.
Will You Need to Install New Ductwork for a Central AC System?
You can pick out the best central AC system in the world for your home and hire the best AC installation company to install it for you. But if the ductwork in your home is old and falling apart, guess what? It’s not going to do you much good!
Prior to putting a new central AC system into place, an AC installation company should evaluate your ductwork and let you know if they would recommend replacing it. If they tell you that it’s time to do this, you should seriously consider doing it so that you’re able to take full advantage of your new central AC system.
Adding all new ductwork throughout your home might end up being very expensive. It’s not all that uncommon for people to pay at least a few thousand dollars for it. It might make you think twice about doing it in the first place.
But new ductwork is going to be well worth it in the end once you see how much better your home’s central AC system is able to work with it. It’s going to make it easier for your system to send cool air all throughout your home so that you can bring the temperature in it back down to earth.
Will You Need to Install a New Thermostat for a Central AC System?
In addition to thinking about replacing the ductwork in your home while installing a new central AC system, you might also want to spring for a new thermostat. Your thermostat is going to be responsible for controlling every aspect of your AC, so it’s imperative that it be up to date and functioning in the way that it’s supposed to.
In this day and age, it would be silly not to at least consider the idea of installing a smart thermostat in your home. There are so many great smart thermostats out there today for you to pick from.
A smart thermostat will make it possible for you to control the temperature in your home from anywhere in your house and, to a larger degree, from anywhere in the world. It’ll also start to get to know your tendencies right away so that it can adjust the temperature in your home to your liking without you having to do a thing.
You don’t need to have a smart thermostat to run a new central AC system in your home. But it won’t add to your central AC costs too much when you get one, and it’ll help you use your new system to its full potential. It’s why you should go ahead and pick one up when you’re buying a new central AC system.
What Will It Cost to Maintain and Repair a Central AC System?
When you first install a new central AC system in your home, you won’t have to worry about doing too much maintenance or too many repairs to it. All of the parts in your system should work just fine for at least the first few years.
But as your new central AC system starts to get up there in age, you’re going to need to make both minor and major tweaks to it to keep it up and running. And different systems are going to force you to pay different AC repair costs down the line.
For this reason, you should do your homework on the different central AC systems that are available to you and select one that has a reputation for being easy to repair. By taking this approach to things, you should be able to steer clear of having to take on too many AC repair jobs. You should also be able to keep your AC repair costs to a minimum.
Doing AC maintenance and AC repair might not be something that’s on your mind when you’re buying a central AC system. But it’s something that you should think about. Otherwise, you could end up paying an arm and a leg for AC repair in the future.
Crunch the Numbers to Find Out What Your Central AC Costs Will Be
It would be almost impossible for us to sit here and put a definitive price tag on a central AC system for you. It’s all going to depend on what type of central AC system you buy, how big that it is, how efficient that it is, and more.
You should let the factors that we’ve discussed here rattle around in your brain so that you’re able to get a better feel for what your central AC costs might be. You’ll be able to avoid experiencing sticker shock when you have a general idea of what it might cost to put a new central AC system into place in your home.
Want to see what it will cost to tackle other home improvement projects? Find out by reading through the other informative articles found on our blog.