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Atlantic Refrigeration and Air Conditioning, Inc. Blog

The 50% Rule: When to Replace Your Air Conditioner


You expect your AC to undergo repairs. You call in a technician, they fix it up, and your world keeps on moving. It’s just part of being a homeowner, but there’s a point where the repairs are too expensive and frequent—that’s when your AC gives you trouble.

So how do you know when you need to replace your AC in Sussex County, DE? You use the 50% rule. Let’s talk about what this is and how you can apply it so you aren’t spending extra money on repairs this summer.

Basics of the 50% Rule

If your air conditioner runs into a full-scale breakdown, you call for repair, and you’ll get a quote on just how much this is going to run you before a technician begins work. This is when you might get hit with a surprising number.

When your air conditioner repair cost is 50% or more than the price of a brand new AC unit, it’s better to just replace your air conditioner right then and there. That isn’t going to be the last repair bill you foot for this aging unit.

When you run into a problem of this scale that ends up costing you multiple thousands of dollars, you have to think about the long-term. It’s not sustainable to keep going like this, and your AC will break down again far too soon, only to hit you with another high bill.

Technicians Can’t Replicate Ideal Factory Conditions

When air conditioners are made, they’re manufactured facilities that use special equipment, and everything is worked out down to the last detail. Now put that same air conditioner through years of extreme temperature exposure, vibrations, and general use—it’s what we call wear and tear.

As good as our technicians are, no HVAC company can replicate those ideal conditions for your air conditioner. Technicians increase the efficiency of your unit as much as possible during repairs and maintenance calls, but it’s impossible to replicate that factory-new condition. You can’t fully halt wear and tear damage.

Start Saving at the Double Digit Mark

Your air conditioner is set to last for around 10–15 years with proper maintenance and timely repairs. Take care of it, and it should last for a while. Once you hit the bottom of that range, it’s time to start saving for the eventual replacement.

Beyond replacing a unit before it breaks down on you, there’s other reasons to upgrade your AC for energy efficient purposes. You can save money on your month-to-month bills with a more efficient unit, which will make it easier to save for that next replacement 10–15 years down the line, too.

Keep in mind that we offer financing options where you can buy today, and pay over time. If your AC breaks down suddenly, you don’t have to simply endure the heat.

Repairs or Replacement: The Choice Is Yours

Use your best judgment when you’re hit with a large repair bill, take a look at your options for replacement, and determine what works best for you and your family. Either way, we’ll be here to maintain, repair, and replace your air conditioner unit(s) whenever you need us.

Contact Atlantic Refrigeration & Air Conditioning, Inc. today to set up your AC replacement as soon as possible.

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