How HVAC Specialists Calculate the Price of Your AC Unit and Installation
You’re trying your hardest to beat that summer heat, but your current central air system or AC unit just isn’t doing the trick like it used to—or maybe you don’t have one at all. Whatever the case may be, it’s undeniably time for a new air conditioner. But how much will this cost you? Unfortunately, even the most qualified HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) specialist can’t give you a sure answer without first inspecting your home and looking at each individual cost factor. Factors like the following:
Size of Your Home and More
How many square feet—across how many floors—is your home? This is typically the very first thing an installation specialist will look at, because the tonnage of your unit will typically depend first and foremost on the size of the space it’s cooling. The tonnage refers to how much heat is removed every hour; each ton is equivalent to 12,000 BTUs per hour. A higher-tonnage unit will be more expensive. Other factors to determine the size of your air conditioner include the construction of your home, how many people and animals live in it, and the energy efficiency of building materials. And while we’re on that topic…
Your new AC unit will have a measurement called a SEER on it—Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. This measures how efficient the unit is by dividing its total seasonal output in BTUs by the total amount of electricity required to make it run. In other words, how much power does it take to get a certain amount of cool air? More efficiency will cost you more upfront, but it will cost less in the long run, so you would recoup the cost before long.
Modifications and Repairs to Your Home
When’s the last time you inspected your ductwork? Before installing anything, you should have a qualified HVAC professional give them a good, thorough look. Ducts that are in disrepair could result in leaks, blockages, and other issues that will prevent your unit from operating at full capacity, and will need to be repaired, adding to the total cost. Something else that can impact the cost is your electrical system—if your home can’t power it, then you may need to add new breakers to your electrical panel.
Don’t forget that your HVAC installer will charge a fee for installing the unit as well as any other work that is required to make it run effectively. Depending on features and ease of installation, this fee may vary.
To find out how much your new air conditioner will set you back, call your HVAC dealer to have a specialist inspect your home today.