Is It Necessary to Replace Your Furnace and AC at the Same Time?
Even though Crystal Blue Plumbing Heating & Air offers quality HVAC systems at reasonable prices, there’s no denying that buying a new HVAC system is a big investment. For that reason, we often field questions from homeowners in the Loomis, CA, area looking for ways to save money in the process. One question that comes up often is whether it’s necessary to replace both your furnace and AC at the same time. The answer to that question, though, depends on a variety of factors. To help you make the right choice, here’s how to tell if you need to replace your furnace and AC simultaneously.
When It Makes Sense to Replace Both Systems
The only time you must replace both your furnace and air conditioner is if both are non-functional or prohibitively expensive to repair. However, there are other situations where it will make sense to replace both systems at once.
When You Need to Resize Your HVAC
One reason that you might need to replace your furnace and AC at the same time is if your existing systems aren’t meeting your comfort needs. This can happen if your existing system is not the proper size for your living space. If this is the case, it makes sense to replace the furnace and AC at the same time since they likely both suffer from similar capacity problems.
Systems Beyond Expected Lifespan
On average, you can expect a central AC system to give you between 10 and 15 years of reliable service. However, a furnace should last you between 15 and 30 years. So, as an example, if your AC is 20 years old and your furnace is a similar age, it might make sense to replace them both. This is because, statistically, your AC is likely on its last legs. And while your furnace might still have some good years left, it’s certainly at an age when you can expect it to need more frequent repairs.
You Want an Efficiency Upgrade
Another reason why you might want to replace your furnace and AC at the same time is if you’re looking for a major efficiency upgrade. AC systems that are 10 or more years old are far less efficient than any replacement system. And furnaces have also come a long way, efficiency-wise, over the past decade. So, if you only replaced one of the two systems, you’d be leaving some major energy savings on the table.
You might want to replace your furnace and AC at the same time if you are upgrading to a heat pump system. A heat pump will provide ultra-efficient heating and cooling from a single unit, obviating the need for a separate furnace and AC.
There are also some situations when you’d have no choice but to replace your furnace and AC at the same time. One is if there’s a compatibility issue between your new system and the one you hadn’t planned on replacing. For example, some modern central air conditioners use variable-speed blower motors to increase their energy efficiency and provide better comfort. However, your existing furnace might not be capable of controlling that blower motor. Since the two systems share a blower, this will force you to replace your furnace at the same time.
You Want Synchronized Warranties
Finally, you may want to replace your furnace and AC at the same time, so both will have simultaneous warranty coverage. When you have two systems installed at separate times, keeping track of which components remain under warranty and which don’t is quite a chore. Plus, it leaves room for confusion every time you need a repair on either system. By replacing both at the same time, you can enjoy synchronized warranty coverage for a hassle-free maintenance and repair experience.
When It’s Fine to Replace Each System Individually
There are multiple scenarios when it’s fine to replace your home’s furnace and AC at different times. Here are a few of them.
You Have Financial Constraints
Any way you look at it, buying a furnace and an AC and paying for their installation isn’t cheap. So, you might opt for a separate replacement of your furnace and AC to fit both within your household budget. However, you should know that replacing your systems separately will impose some restrictions upon you, such as having to choose a new furnace or AC that’s compatible with your existing equipment. Plus, you should also know that you will increase your total installation costs since it’s cheaper to replace both systems at once than separately due to labor expenses.
Your Furnace or AC Is Relatively New
You might also wish to replace your furnace or AC on its own if one of them is much newer than the other. For example, if a major mechanical breakdown forced you to replace your furnace sooner than you’d expected, it will not make much sense to scrap it. In that case, it will be a smarter decision to buy a new AC and leave the furnace alone.
Your Furnace Doesn’t See Much Use
Another reason you might want to replace your furnace and AC separately is if your furnace doesn’t see much use. Here in the Loomis area, we have mild winters. That means the furnaces in homes here typically don’t run as often or for as long as they would in a colder climate. As a result, it’s possible for a furnace installed here to stay in good working condition for longer than you might expect. By contrast, your AC sees higher than average use, leading to more wear and tear. However, it’s a good idea to have one of our expert HVAC technicians evaluate both your furnace and AC for you before you make any assumptions about their condition.
You Already Own an Efficient Furnace or AC
You may also want to replace your furnace or AC separately if one of them is already more efficient than the replacement system. This could happen if you chose to spend more on your last furnace or AC replacement to get a model that was more efficient than average. So, if your existing furnace was in good working order and had an AFUE rating of 90 or above, you probably wouldn’t want to replace it. Not when that efficiency places your furnace among the most efficient models on the market, even today.
Your Local Heating and Cooling Specialists
Whether you need a new furnace, AC, or both, Crystal Blue Plumbing Heating & Air can help. We’ve served homeowners here since 1976 and have an unparalleled track record for quality workmanship and unbeatable customer service. We offer comprehensive HVAC services, including system installation, maintenance, and repair. That includes the latest in heat pump technology. Plus, we offer complete plumbing services, air quality solutions, boilers, thermostats, and more. So, whatever your home comfort needs are, you can count on us to meet them. If you need a new furnace or AC for your Loomis home, call the experts at Crystal Blue Plumbing Heating & Air today!