Air conditioner replaced at the same time as furnace

Did your HVAC system just call it quits? It’s true that the cost of buying a new furnace or AC can seem overwhelming when you first see your bill. While it is tempting to just ask for the bare minimum, we actually often recommend that our customers think about replacing both their furnace and air conditioner at the same time. Why? There are a handful of benefits that, over time, really pay off.

1. Performance

One key element to keep in mind when replacing your furnace or AC is that these systems were designed to work together in order to provide the optimum temperature and air quality for your home. If you replace your furnace with a newer model but leave your 20 year old air conditioner in place, you’re placing some limitations on how well your new furnace will perform. You can have the highest quality, most efficient and technologically advanced furnace installed, but its performance capabilities will still be influenced by the limitations of your old AC unit.

2. Energy Efficiency

Whenever you upgrade from an old furnace or AC, you’re investing in newer technology and more energy efficient equipment. You can check the seasonal energy efficiency rating (SEER) for your air conditioner, or the annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) for your furnace by using an online calculator. The bottom line is that if both your furnace and air conditioner are 15-20 years old, you might as well invest in replacing both at the same time to double your energy-savings.

3. Cost

We often have clients asking us about overall installation cost and whether or not it makes sense for them to replace their furnace and air conditioner at the same time if one is still working fully. However, when you think about it in the long term, you’ll actually be saving money but having one contractor upgrade your air conditioner and furnace at the same time. The alternative is to replace your AC, wait for something to go wrong with the furnace a few years later, pay another contractor to come out and inspect it, and then go through the whole installation process all over again. You’ll be kicking yourself when you realize that for three years you could have been saving money on your utility bills, conserving energy, and having an overall more comfortable living environment.

4. Matched Systems

Another factor that affects efficiency and overall costs is whether or not you’re using a matched system. HVAC manufacturers create furnaces and air conditioners under the assumption that they’ll be working together, sharing the same blower and operating at maximum efficiency. If you’re worried about ensuring that your units are working at full capacity, then it definitely makes sense to replace your furnace and air conditioner at the same time – and to purchase units that come from the same manufacturer.

5. Longevity

Installing a matched system not only aids in energy efficiency, but it also helps reduce strain on both your furnace and air conditioner. And, consequently, less strain means less wear and tear on your equipment, and a longer lifespan overall. In fact, don’t be surprised if your manufacturer offers a better warranty when you replace both your furnace and air conditioner at the same time – they’re aware of the issues that having a mismatched system can cause.

If you’re worried about the initial installation costs when someone suggests that you replace your furnace and air conditioner at the same time, make sure to keep in mind the above points before making a final decision. And as always, consult with a professional HVAC service provider in your area in order to make the most informed decision.