The Ultimate Guide to Home Air Conditioner Service Cost
Air conditioning service is one of those things that every person living in a warm climate needs, but it’s also something people want to acquire conveniently. There’s an interesting catch-22 that occurs whenever the weather warms up: people want to make sure their air conditioners are running at peak capacity, but they often shy away from the costs of service.
However, that’s not to say that you need to spend an inordinate amount of money on good air conditioner service. It’s true that keeping sensitive equipment such as your AC running optimally, requires an investment, but if you’re smart about the way you shop you can secure excellent service without going outside your budget.
Trying to predict exact home air conditioner service costs is almost impossible because no two homes are the same. Different layouts, levels of insulation, and local climates can all contribute to the price of air conditioning service. It’s not unusual for a routine procedure such as refrigerant recharging costs to vary slightly for each individual customer. However, there’s a range of prices that are generally considered acceptable for each aspect of professional air conditioner service. In the following article, we’ll look at some of the most important AC services, and explain the factors that can raise or lower them in different situations.
Routine Service Calls
Many technicians will quote a flat rate simply for visiting your home and performing an inspection. The difference between these costs depends almost entirely on the technician you select. Before you decide to choose the cheapest service, you can find though, consider a few other factors: are they licensed? Do they have a history of offering reliable service? Are they polite and professional to their customers? Sometimes companies that do all these things charge a little more, but it’s almost always worth it to have a skilled and respectful professional in your home.
A service call will cost somewhere between $40 to $250. The flat rate your technician quotes you will be augmented by the amount of time they spend in your building. You should always expect to pay something for a service call, even if the technician doesn’t find anything wrong or discovers that another contractor (such as an electrician) is needed. After all, their time is money.
Refrigerant is an important substance because it effectively allows your system to perform the cooling duties you expect of it. However, in the event of a leak, recharging your refrigerant can reasonably cost anywhere from $160 to $400. Obviously, the biggest factor in determining the exact costs for a job like this has much to do with how much refrigerant is being replaced. Most companies charge by the pound for Freon refrigerant replacements.
You may be tempted to try replacing the Freon in your system yourself, but in most cases, you should not try this. Refrigerant leaks have the potential to damage your compressor and cause much more expensive problems, so hiring a professional is usually best. Additionally, professionals will typically check your system after a refrigerant recharge to make sure that it is working properly—making their services a good investment.
Compressor Replacement and Other Major Issues
Many smaller repairs are unlikely to cost you more than $500 or $600, but you should be aware of the potential costs larger problems can incur. For example, your compressor can cost between $1350 and $1800 to replace. The price will depend largely on the kind of system you have and how expensive its replacement parts are. In any case, though, compressor failure should be regarded as an expensive problem that you want to avoid instead of correcting in retrospect.
Your evaporator coil is another potentially expensive problem, coming in at a high-average cost of about $1200. Whether fixing your evaporator coil will cost this much depends on what exactly is wrong with it. If your coil is simply dirty, you should be able to have it cleaned for a total of no more than $400 (including labour). However, if it is leaking or damaged, you can expect to pay much more.
At the end of the day, it is much cheaper to arrange for routine preventative maintenance than it is to replace an expensive component such as your evaporator coil or compressor. Many AC companies will offer regular service plans where you pay a set annual amount for one or two annual visits. Each contractor offers different plans, but all of them are likely to be more cost-effective than waiting until you need major repairs. Choose wisely, and make sure you research the average prices for other AC problems so that you can make sure your contractors are always giving you a fair price.