Are you planning for AC replacement in Bradenton, FL, this year? Data from Angi suggests you can expect to pay around $3,900 to $7,900; nationally, the average cost is $5,894.1 But you may spend less or more depending on the type of system, its size, the cost of materials, and a variety of other factors. We’ll look at what affects the cost of AC replacement so you can budget accordingly.
Why Are Air Conditioners So Expensive?
Air conditioning units are notoriously expensive. However, their cost is largely determined by the type of unit or system you install. A small portable unit can cost $100 to $500 and a window AC can cost $150 to $800. However, a central AC averages up to $4,000 (not including labor, ductwork, electrical upgrades, permits, and other extra costs). And a ductless split system can cost as much as $20,000 (or, as little as $600).1
Some of the reasons for such high costs include:
- Air conditioners are complex machines
- They require trained specialists to install
- New technologies must meet the latest regulations
- The costs of raw materials continue to increase
- Installation can require additional services
What Determines the Price of AC Replacement in Bradenton?
The size of an air conditioning unit (its capacity) is one of the most influential cost factors. Air conditioner sizes are measured in tons; a 1-ton AC uses 12,000 British Thermal Units (BTUs) of energy to remove heat from a room. But it’s only suited for a space of up to 500 square feet. A 3-ton AC equals 36,000 BTUs and can cool a 2,500-square-foot home.1 The larger your home, the more cooling power you’ll need; the larger the system, the more it costs.
The cost of AC replacement is also determined by:
- AC Brand: The quality and reputation of the brand influence the price of equipment and services. Some of the most recognized AC brands include Lennox, American Standard, Frigidaire, Amana, and Coleman. Investing in quality upfront can yield savings in terms of efficiency, fewer repairs, and longevity. But Trane, Rheem, and Carrier are well-known yet tend to offer lower prices. Do your research when comparing quality vs. price so you know what you’re getting.
- AC Installer: Every AC company sets a different installation rate. Labor is typically charged by the hour and it can take a few days to install a large central AC system. Get a feel for the installer’s quality of service and if the company is licensed and insured, includes a satisfaction guarantee, and offers other perks.
- Energy Efficiency: The higher an AC unit’s efficiency rating, the more expensive it is. Air conditioner efficiency is measured using its seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER). This is its total seasonal output (in BTUs) divided by the amount of electricity it uses over the season. In Florida and other southern states, an AC must be at least 14 SEER. A higher efficiency unit can have a SEER in the mid to high 20s.
- Age of Your Home: Installing an AC system in a new construction home generally costs less than retrofitting an older home. If you have a house that’s several decades old, you may need new ductwork and to replace the insulation. Additional materials and labor charges may be factored in if walls need to be broken down or electrical upgrades are required. And since central AC systems require drain lines, the cost of plumbing can be a factor.
- Zoning: If your home has multiple floors or you want to cool different rooms separately, zoning an AC system is an option. However, it can require installing additional equipment, which is a significant cost consideration.
- Equipment Removal: In most cases, an AC company will remove and dispose of your old air conditioner. This service may or may not be included in the total quote. If you have to pay extra (or hire someone else), it can cost up to $200 depending on size and ease of access.1
- Extended Warranty: An extended warranty can cost a few hundred dollars but covers the unit longer than a standard manufacturer’s warranty.
- Permits: Most cities and municipalities require a licensed professional to install an AC system. Obtaining a permit ensures local and federal regulations are followed and that the system is properly inspected. Fees vary from one locale to another.
How to Make AC Replacement More Affordable
Planning can help budget for a new AC unit. It allows you to do research and can avoid replacing the system in a hurry if it breaks down in the summer. Tax credits may be available to cover part of the installation, especially if it’s a high-efficiency unit. Financing options from your AC company can also help make your purchase more affordable with monthly payments and low interest rates.
Contact Tri County Air for AC Replacement in Bradenton
If you’re looking to replace your air conditioner this year, Tri County Air can help select and install a high-efficiency system. We work with reputable manufacturers that have stood the test of time. Our technicians are fully licensed and can be depended upon for quality installation, while we also offer financing, specials, and memberships to ensure you receive the required maintenance. To learn more or schedule an AC replacement, request your appointment online or call (941) 485-2222 today.