How Long Should a Central Air Conditioner Last in Florida?
June 11, 2021
According to energy.gov, a central air conditioner should last 15-20 years.
In Florida, though, the lifespan is more like 8-10 years since you use your AC all year round. So if your AC is about 8 years old, you may want to start shopping for a new one.
Below, we’ll share some preventative measures you can take to avoid an untimely replacement:
- Repairing leaky ductwork
- Changing out air filters
- Getting your AC professionally maintained
Want to schedule professional AC maintenance? Contact Advanced Air today. Our AC pros will get your AC system running at peak performance.
Tip #1: Repair leaky ductwork
Homes with central air conditioning have a system of built-in air ducts made of galvanized steel or aluminum. On the “return side,” they’ll suction in warm air to be cooled, and on the “supply side,” they’ll supply cool air to your home.
Over time, air ducts can develop tiny holes that leak air. If your home’s ductwork needs patchwork repairs, it could put a strain on your AC system as a whole.
When your AC is under strain, it usually plays out in one of two ways:
1. Unnecessarily long running times.
When the leakage is on the supply side, your AC will lose cold air to unconditioned spaces, causing your AC to run longer to cool your home. Longer run times not only increase your energy bills but also put extra wear on your AC system.
2. A dirty indoor unit.
If the leakage is on the return side, then when your AC runs, it will pull in dirty, unconditioned air from the attic.
Excess dirt not only requires you to replace your air filter before needed, but it also decreases your indoor air quality and increases the likelihood of your AC breaking down.
To prevent leaky ductwork from happening, we recommend having an AC professional perform a duct sealing service. This way, you can trust that all of your air ducts are thoroughly sealed and functioning properly.
Tip #2: Change your air filters
Something as simple as a dirty air filter can wreak havoc on your AC system.
Does your air filter look like the one below on the right?
If so, the chances of your AC breaking down are high.
When a filter gets clogged with dust, dirt, hair and other common household air contaminants, it becomes a big barrier, decreasing the amount of air entering the AC system.
Because your AC system relies on a balanced flow of warm air coming in and cold air flowing out, you'll start to see issues if there’s a kink in the chain.
For example, as warm air passes over your AC’s evaporator coils, it uses a chemical refrigerant to absorb the heat from the air. But if there isn’t enough warm air passing over the coils, they’ll get too cold and start to freeze. Worse, as your refrigerant lines carry freezing temperatures back outside to your AC’s compressor, it can create a complete breakdown of what’s the engine of your AC system.
To avoid freezing evaporator coils and a potentially broken compressor, check your air filter(s) once a month and change it out if dirty.
On Advanced Air’s air filter website, you can purchase air filter replacements for DIY installation. However, if you'd rather have a professional handle when or how to change your air filters, contact us to learn more about our AC tune-ups.
Tip #3: Get your AC professionally maintained
Just like your car, your AC needs professional maintenance in order to run safely and efficiently. How would you ever know if something is worn, damaged, or not correctly working without it?
Hands down, the best way to keep your AC lasting as long as possible is with yearly maintenance. Often referred to as a “tune-up,” during your service, the technician will perform a thorough safety and performance inspection that includes things like:
- Checking/replacing dirty air filters
- Checking/replacing broken parts
- Testing electrical connections
- Inspecting the motor, thermostat and condenser coils
- And much more
According to energystar.gov, the best time to get your AC serviced is in the spring. This way, you’re well prepared for the intense heat of summer, which is one of the most common times that AC breakdowns happen.
To prevent minor repairs from snowballing into expensive fixes and keep your AC lasting as long as possible, set yourself up for success and schedule AC maintenance today.
Bonus: With annual professional service, you keep your manufacturer’s warranty valid!
Want AC maintenance from a trusted Florida pro?
At Advanced Air, we offer flat-rate pricing and an up-front guarantee of checklist items for your AC tune-up. With convenient scheduling appointments and 100% customer satisfaction, you can count on us to deliver your best AC maintenance service possible. Contact us today and see why Florida homeowners have given us hundreds of 5-star ratings!
- Posted in:
- Air Conditioner