Should You Replace the Air Handler or the Entire HVAC System?

Cost is always a factor when it comes to replacing a part of your HVAC system. While it may be cheaper to replace a single component, if you have to repair or replace the other parts at a later date, it will end up costing more than if you had replaced the entire system. The air handler is one of the most important components of an air conditioning system. It is usually located inside the house and is responsible for moving cold (or hot) air around the house.

It houses the fan motor, evaporator coil and air filter. Because air handlers are essential for keeping your home's temperature, it's important to know when to repair or replace them. If the air flow out of the vents seems weaker than normal or varies throughout the day, it could indicate that the fan motor on your air handler is out of order. A fan that isn't working properly can increase wear and tear on your air handler and cause it to crack and leak as well. Dirt and debris can also cause the engine to strain and malfunction. If this is the case, you can hire a certified HVAC technician to clean or repair the engine for you.

That said, if your engine is still malfunctioning, it may be necessary to replace your air handler. It's summer days for dogs and ice is forming on their air handler. This is one of the telltale signs that something is happening with your HVAC system, and there are several reasons why this could happen. Ice forms in the air conditioner when the temperature of the evaporator coils falls below the freezing point, which means that cold air does not circulate properly through the air conditioning system. It could mean you have a clogged air filter or even dirty evaporator coils.

That's why it's crucial to keep up with basic air conditioning maintenance. However, a frozen air handler could also indicate that there is a refrigerant leak somewhere in the air conditioning system. Not only will this cause your unit to freeze, but depending on the location of the leak, it could expose you and your family to toxic chemicals. If you suspect that you may have a refrigerant leak, it could be a sign that your air handler needs to be replaced. It's almost a fact that your energy bills are likely to fluctuate as the seasons change, but if your energy consumption is dramatically higher than usual, it could point to a bigger HVAC problem. When your heating and cooling systems start to age, they need to work harder to maintain the temperature in your home.

To avoid unwanted spikes in your monthly bills, it's essential to have your HVAC system checked by a certified technician at least once a year. But even if you check your system regularly, a malfunction of the air treatment system could result in a dizzying monthly bill. Do you know how old your air conditioning system is? If not, it's worth noting. The Department of Energy recommends that homeowners replace their HVAC system every 10 to 15 years. Although heating and cooling systems are designed to withstand heavy use, their components will start to wear out after 10 years.

That means evaporator coils, motor fans, and condensers could start to show signs of aging. This also means that your air handler could start to crack and develop leaks as a result of age. HVAC systems comprise several important components that can make or break the overall importance of the system. If you suspect that your system is malfunctioning due to a broken oven or air conditioner (or any other component), it might be tempting to replace the component in question. After all, why spend extra money if you don't have to? However, in most cases, it's probably best to replace the entire system when a component needs to be replaced. Although it may be cheaper to replace just a specific part of the system, you'll likely have to replace another part soon after and end up spending more in the long run.

However, recognizing the specific problems associated with your system can make diagnosing HVAC problems much easier. When replacing your home's outdoor air conditioning unit, HVAC experts recommend that you also replace the indoor unit. While this is your sole decision, not replacing both can result in problems such as reduced efficiency, periodic failures, and increased cooling costs. Here are other reasons why you should replace both units at the same time:

  • Compatibility: The new unit must be compatible with all other components in order for it to provide adequate performance and efficiency.
  • Efficiency: Replacing both units at once ensures maximum efficiency from both units.
  • Cost: Replacing both units at once will save money in the long run.
I hope this helped you understand that it's absolutely possible to replace just your air conditioner without replacing your entire HVAC system. Consider discounts and efficiency when making this decision. In other words, if you just replace the outdoor air conditioning unit, you'll end up with a system that doesn't match and is unlikely to meet your heating and cooling needs.