- 1 What is an HVAC?
- 2 Why HVAC Unit Maintenance Is Important?
- 3 Pro Tips to lower HVAC Repair or Maintenance Cost
- 4 How to do HVAC maintenance?
- 5 How to do Troubleshoot and Repair an Air Conditioning system?
- 6 HVAC Repair Cost
- 7 HVAC Maintenance Cost
- 8 HVAC Emergency Service Cost
- 9 HVAC Service Price List
- 10 HVAC Inspection Cost
- 11 FAQ Section
- 11.1 Who invented the first hvac system?
- 11.2 How to reduce the HVAC Maintenance Cost?
- 11.3 What type of AC is best?
- 11.4 What is the Tune-Up Cost of the HVAC Unit?
- 11.5 What is the annual Service cost of HVAC?
- 11.6 What is considered a major repair in HVAC?
- 11.7 How long does the air conditioner last?
- 11.8 What is the service life of HVAC Unit?
- 11.9 How to hire an HVAC repair Contractor?
What is an HVAC?
HVAC is an essential unit of your house all year round. These systems keep your building cool in summer and warm in winter. If you use it continuously, the air conditioning system can face the high strain, and ultimately it may fail. The best way to prevent your system from any damage or failure, the regular repair, maintenance, and service of the HVAC system is very important.
The maintenance of the air conditioning system is important because if you do not perform regular maintenance of your system, it may fail, and the replacement of the entire air conditioner can result in more costs. Hence, you need to acquire the necessary tips to avoid costly HVAC repairs.
As soon as you notice a problem in your system, or the more tests you implement and the more you stop the problem in the first place, the lower your HVAC maintenance cost will be.
In this article, we will intensely discuss the most common signs of a bad HVAC system, repair method, service, and maintenance costs of the HVAC system.
Read Also: Working of HVAC system
Why HVAC Unit Maintenance Is Important?
Your air conditioning system works as a car. It needs regular maintenance and care like a car for proper working, which extends its service life. A properly working HVAC system can keep your house warm or comfortable for many years.
There are many advantages of a properly working HVAC system, and some of them are given below:
1) Lower Utility Bills
The proper maintenance of the HVAC unit reduces the utility bills. Efficient HVAC units in combination with well-insulated houses reduce the costs of cooling, heating, and electricity. Air conditioning maintenance is also important to avoid costly repair or complete replacements.
2) Ensure Healthy Indoor Air
A well-maintained HVAC system keeps your building comfortable and cool, as well as it also improves indoor air quality problems. The good working air cleaner filters and coils ensure good quality breathing air for the whole family.
Unmaintained air conditioner attracts bacteria, mold, and dust, mixing them with indoor breathing air and transferring it inside the building. All of these contaminations can cause or worsen breathing difficulties for the household family.
3) Extend HVAC service life
The proper maintenance of your HVAC system increases the service life of your system. The cost of an HVAC system is very high.
As you buy this system for your house or building, you will desire that it works for a long time. Therefore, for long-time proper working, the proper maintenance and repair of HVAC unit are essential.
4) Improve Efficiency
A most efficient HVAC unit is cheaper to run and consumes less energy. An unmaintained or dirty system requires 20% more electricity to produce the same level of heating or cooling as a properly maintained air conditioning system.
5) Very Low Emergency Repairs
Sometimes, the HVAC system may require urgent repair. A properly maintained equipment is less likely to fail during a season of continuous use, such as for the cold winter months from November to April and the summer months from July to September.
Therefore, keep your air conditioner up-to-date through consistent inspection and maintenance, which will eliminate the risk of HVAC outages in the most urgently needed months and save future HVAC maintenance costs.
Pro Tips to lower HVAC Repair or Maintenance Cost
1) Clean the Condenser, Compressor or Heat Pump
Therefore, the proper cleaning of the compressor, heat pump, and condenser is very important for the proper working of the system.
The proper cleaning of these parts reduces the possibility of damage to the internal components of the HVAC system. Therefore, the homeowner should ensure no debris on the casing or side of the air conditioner pump and other parts.
Read Also: Different types of Compressors
2) Check the Filter
Dirty air filters are another major reason of the air conditioning system failure or repair. Filter replacement is a cheapest and easiest method to perform HVAC maintenance to increase the air conditioner efficiency, improve indoor air quality, lower heating energy costs, and reduce the possibility of repairs.
You must inspect your air filters once a month to make sure that they are clean and free from clogs. If they are dirty, it is the best option to clean them properly, blow air over them, and use them.
You must change the filter of your air conditioning at least once every three months. If it looks dirty than usual, especially if you have pets in your house, change them at least one time within 3 months.
If you are using a reusable filter, gently clean it with a soft cloth. Then mix mild soap and water and wash the filter.
3) Regular or Annual Professional Inspections
In the on-site inspection, an HVAC professional inspects the HVAC system and ensures that it is operating at its best. In the inspection, the professional performs the following actions:
- Ensuring the fan is working properly
- Checking the furnace heat exchanger for leaks
- Air filter cleaning
- Measuring the refrigerant level
- Cleaning of the drain pipes
- Coils cleaning
The inspection can be carried out once or once a year as part of regular maintenance.
4) Clean the Drain Lines
When cooling the indoor air, the air conditioning system also removes humidity from the indoor air. This humidity collects in the air conditioner drain lines from where it is removed into the environment. With the passage of time, the dust and dirt build-up inside the drain lines due to that these lines can clog and reduce the performance of your system.
Therefore, it is recommended to clean the drain pipe regularly. Remove the air conditioner housing and clean the drain lines with a clean cloth.
5) Keeping the Outdoor Unit Clear
Outdoor units are constantly exposed due to environmental influences such as debris, dirt, weather, and other contaminations.
In addition, with time, the growth of plants covers the outdoor units and stops the outdoor air from existing effectively.
Therefore, you must continuously monitor the area around the outdoor unit and observe the bushes and leaves that need pruning.
How to do HVAC maintenance?
You need to check and perfom the following major steps for the HVAC maintenance:
- Use good filters
- Clear debris around the outdoor units
- Check refrigerant lines monthly
- Maintain your unit level
- Eliminate clogs
- In Summer, Turn off water supplied to your furnace’s humidifier
- Don’t shut too many registers
- Odors and noises
1) Use Good Filters
As mentioned above, you must change your air filter within 30 to 90 days. The proper maintenance of the HVAC air filters prevents you from expansive repair.
The clean filters improve the indoor air quality and efficiency of your HVAC system. A dirty filter means your system will have to work harder to keep your room at your desired temperature.
2) Clear Debris Around the Outdoor Units
Debris can easily build up around outdoor units of HVAC equipment. If you have trees around the outdoor units, their leaves fall in autumn. These leaves and many other contaminations may collect on the outdoor units of your air conditioner.
This contamination collection may clog or damage the outdoor units. Therefore, regularly inspect your outdoor unit to ensure that there is at least 60 cm of free space around the heat pump or air conditioner.
3) Check Refrigerant Lines Monthly
The refrigerant pipes that enter from HVAC equipment to your home ensure cooling or heating for your building.
If these pipes fall out, leak, or wear out, you can’t achieve a comfortable temperature according to your requirements. Therefore, check these lines at least once a month, even in winter, and ensure their proper working.
4) Maintain Your Unit Level
The level of the HVAC or air conditioning affects the performance of the HVAC. For the HVAC system to function properly, you need to make sure that it is leveled properly and not sloped.
Therefore, after every 2 to 3 months, you need to ensure that the system is properly level with the floor. If you place the unit on pads, ensure that they can’t move.
5) Eliminate Clogs
This is a great DIY hack for preventing algae and mold from building up in your system. After every 10 to 12 months, mix the bleach with a glass of water and pour it down the drain of the air conditioner condenser to remove the buildup of algae or mold.
6) In Summer, Turn off Water Supplied to Your Furnace’s Humidifier
A running humidifier is useless and increases the utility bill in the summer. If the air begins to cool in summer end or early fall and you are considering turning on the heater, replace a new filter and adjust the humidity up to 40%. After this setup, turn on the supply of the water.
7) Don’t Shut Too Many Registers
You don’t need to close more than 20% registers of your house. If you do so, this puts an extra load on the HVAC unit by forcing it to work harder to deliver the desired amount of cooling or heating.
8) Odors and Noises
Pay attention to strange smells or noises when starting the device. The unusual smell or sounds may occur due to damaged or failed parts of the system.
Read Also: Different types of Pumps
How to do Troubleshoot and Repair an Air Conditioning system?
The repair of the HVAC or AC system can be performed in the following way:
- Shut-off the power
- Remove dirt from the condenser coils
- Test the fuse
- Check the inside of the access panel
- Replace the start/run capacitor
- Replace the air conditioner conductor
- Test HVAC or AC Repair
1) Shut-off the Power :-
- First of all, open the electrical box and remove the insulating block.
- Use a voltage detector to check the inner side of the box to ensure that the power is really shut-off.
2) Remove dirt from the Condenser Coils :-
- Lift the nozzle up at the condenser coil top to eliminate any debris that has accumulated under the cap.
- Then push the nozzle downward to remove debris from the fins of the coil.
- Set the nozzle for a gentler flow of water, then spray water directly onto the coil to remove any residual residue.
3) Test the Fuse :-
Some disconnecting blocks have two cartridge fuses. Inspect these fuses properly before proceeding with the repair of the HVAC or air conditioner.
A blown fuse is a symptom of a fault in your condensing system, which may create worse problems for you. In such a case, you must buy a new fuse, install it and then restart the device. If your fuse has been blown again, call a technician to fix it.
4) Check the Inside of the Access Panel :-
Follow the electrical wiring inside the house to find the access panel. After the electricity power off process, detach the panel by removing the screws which secure the access panel. Please, place the screws in a safe place from where you can easily find them. After this process, inspect the wiring.
If the wire is broken or the insulator is bitten off, and an electrical repair is safe then firstly discharge the capacitor. Then repair the electricity cables and clean the nest. Otherwise, contact an expert.
5) Replace the Start/Run Capacitor :-
An AC service unit has at least one capacitor. The main objective of the capacitor is to store electricity and release electrical energy when the condenser and compressor start working.
This unit of the AC system supplies the two motors with additional power. It also eliminates voltage fluctuations and protects condenser fan and compressor motors from damage.
Due to this reason, the proper repair, service, or replacement of the air conditioner (AC) capacity is very important on time.
6) Replace the Air conditioner Conductor :-
AC contactor is an electrical relay that takes a low-voltage power supply from a thermostat to transfer a high-amperage, 220-volt current to a condenser fan and compressor.
This contactor may wear out, which is a most common reason for the AC service or repair. You must replace the contactor after every 5 years even if the AC contactor works normally. Unscrew the old air condition contactor before eradicating the wires. Then insert the wires into the new device.
7) How to test HVAC or AC Repair :-
- Reinstall the access panel and remove the block.
- Switch on the heater and circuit breaker, fix the thermostat at a lower temperature, and wait for the air conditioner power to turn on.
- As the compressor unit starts working then the condenser fan also starts rotating.
- If the compressor works but the fan is not working, it may be possible that your fan motor has been burned out. In such condition, follow the below-given procedure:
- Turn off the power supply and eliminate the housing of the condenser.
- Remove the motor and fan blades.
- Reinstall the fan blades and tightly close the housing.
- Turn on the power and see whether the fan is working or not.
- If the fan is not working then you must call a technician.
Read Also: Different types of Compressors
HVAC Repair Cost
The repair costs of the HVAC system varies according to the type of repair and the area where you live.
The average repair cost of the HVAC varies from $140 to $450, with most owners investing $270 on furnace service and $320 on AC service. The maximum HVAC service provider contractors charge $79 to $160 per hour with a service call fee of $70 to $210, which applies only for the first hour.
The below given table represents the HVAC repair cost in detail:
|National Average Cost||$290|
|Average Range||$140 to $450|
HVAC Maintenance Cost
The average maintenance service cost of HVAC varies from $145 to $450 for maximum furnace and AC repairs with at least service call charges from $70 to $200. If you cannot find the exact problem in your system, the technician may charge up to $90 to diagnose your AC.
The average tune-up cost of HVAC varies from $90 to $200.
The following table represents various costs of the HVAC unit.
|Service Type||Average Cost|
|Emergency Hourly Rate||$130 – $260|
|Diagnostic Test||$80 – $120|
|Tune-Up||$90 – $200|
|Service Call||$70 – $200|
|Hourly Rate||$70 – $160|
If you require additional heating or cooling units to be repaired, they will increase your costs. However, you can reduce the repair or maintenance of your ac or furnace by proper maintenance.
HVAC Emergency Service Cost
The average HVAC emergency service costs are two or three times more than the regular service rate. The lowest emergency cost of the HVAC vary from $130 to $220 per hour, while maximum contractors charge $390 to $610 per hour.
HVAC Service Price List
The service cost of HVAC equipment is divided into two parts:
- The first table represents the air conditioner service costs
- The second table represents the furnace service costs
1) AC Service Cost
The average service cost of AC is $320. The maximum owners pay from $120 to $460 to repair the central air conditioning system.
The below-given table represents the service or repair costs of different AC unit parts:
|AC Service||Average Cost|
|AC Unit Replacement||$3,360 to $5,910|
|HVAC cleaning cost||$290 to $800|
|AC Filter Drier Replacement Cost||$210 to $300|
|AC Lineset Replacement Cost||$190 to $670|
|AC Compressor Hard Start Kit||$9 to $280|
|Flush Drain Line||$70 to $260|
|Thermostat Replacement||$80 to $580|
|Relays, Circuit Breakers, or Fuses||$70 to $300|
|AC Drain Pan Replacement||$140 to $360|
|Condensate Drain Tube||$90 to $200|
|Evaporator Coil Leak Repair||$1,200 – $2,100|
|Condensate Pump||$90 to $170|
|Condenser Coil Replacement Cost||$1,800 to $3,000|
|AC Condenser Replacement Costs||$1,350 to $1,820|
|AC Fan Motor Replacement||$220 to $710|
|Evaporator Coil Replacement||$670 to $1,400|
|AC Contactor Replacement||$140 to $360|
|AC Capacitor Replacement Cost||$90 to $260|
|AC Circuit Board Replacement||$140 to $380|
|Air Handler Replacement||$900 to $3,700|
|Repair Refrigerant Leak Cost||$190 to $1,600|
|AC Freon Recharge Cost||$90 ton$610|
|AC Compressor Replacement||$900 to $2,600|
|Tune-Up||$80 to $120|
|AC Duct Work Repair||$30 to $60 per foot to replace $1 to $5 per foot to repair|
|AC Diagnostic Cost||$80 to $120|
|Service Call||$70 to $190|
Furnace Service Costs
The average service cost of the furnace is $270. The repair cost of the furnace varies from $130 to $360. Some HVAC engineers charge from $60 to $160 per hour for furnace repair.
The following table represents the service, maintenance or repair cost of various components of the furnace:
|Furnace Replacement||$1,900 to $5,600|
|Draft Inducer Replacement||$140 to $470|
|Smart Valve Replacement||$600 to $780|
|Gas Valve Replacement||$100 to $170|
|Thermostat Replacement||$130 to $170|
|Damper Motor Replacement||$80 to $340|
|Blower Motor Replacement||$400 to $470|
|Flame Sensor Replacement||$200 to 260|
|Ignitor Replacement||$290 to $410|
|Heat Exchanger Replacement||$1,200 to $2,070|
|Pressure Sensor / Circuit Board||$300 to $380|
|Repair Pressure Sensor / Circuit Board||$30 to $80|
|Heat Exchanger Repair||$80 to $140|
|Flame Sensor Repair||$50 to $100|
|Blower Motor Repair Cost||$100 to $180|
HVAC Inspection Cost
HVAC unit is an expansive and most important system for your building. Therefore, proper inspection of this system is essential to ensure that the system has been properly maintained or installed and is functioning effectively.
The inspection professional also ensures that the system meets the testing and verification demands of the Home Energy Assessment System (HERS). HVAC must be tested as part of the approval process.
The HVAC inspection cost varies according to the building size and the type of inspection. HVAC inspection costs vary from $180 to $650.
The below-given table represents the inspection price of the HVAC system:
|Inspection fee||$180 to $650|
|Travel fee||$20 to $50|
|Total Cost||$200 to $700|
Who invented the first hvac system?
In 1902, Willis Haviland Carrier invented the first modern air conditioner.
How to reduce the HVAC Maintenance Cost?
Follow the below-given tips to reduce your HVAC system repair and maintenance cost:
- Regularly check debris and dust
- Inspect and replace the air filters every 90 days
- Check battery
- Remove debris
- Regular test the heating and cooling functions of your system
- Clear Fins
- Ensure the proper level of your unit
- Clear evaporator drain
- Clean evaporator coils
What type of AC is best?
Inverter AC unit supplies better and more even cooling compared to normal air conditioning systems. The inverter air conditioner generates low noise and high productivity.
What is the Tune-Up Cost of the HVAC Unit?
The tune-up cost of an HVAC unit varies according to the area where you live. The average tune-up costs of the HVAC vary from $65 to $210. In this tune-up, the HVAC technician will do the below-given jobs:
- Inspection of your HVAC system
- Air filter cleaning
- Blow out the dirt and dust
- Repairing of worn-out parts.
What is the annual Service cost of HVAC?
The average annual service costs of an HVAC system vary from $140 to $310. This cost includes one or two tune-ups of your system.
What is considered a major repair in HVAC?
In the major repair, service, or maintenance of HVAC unit, the repair or maintenance of the following major parts includes:
- Auxiliary heat exchanger coil.
- Heat Pump
How long does the air conditioner last?
The service life of the HVAC system depends on the repair, service, and maintenance method of the system. The service life of a properly maintained air conditioner varies from 10 to 15 years.
What is the service life of HVAC Unit?
The service life of a well-maintained HVAC unit is from 15 to 25 years. If you do not properly maintain your system, it may fail within 10 years.
How to hire an HVAC repair Contractor?
Follow the following instructions to hire an HVAC repair contractor:
- The contractor must be certified or licensed by the state where you live.
- Check the repair or maintenance service cost of the contractor.
- Check the competency level of the contractor team. At competency level, check their working method, experience, and knowledge.
- The contractor must be insured and bonded for a minimum of $400,000.
- Check the previous performance of the contractor.
- Verify the contractor reviews for an HVAC repair through multiple platforms.
- Select a contractor with a good experienced team (at least 5 years experience of each worker).
- Contact with different HVAC contractors to check their rates, availability, and experience.
- Select a contractor who can provide you a suitable warranty on the labour cost.
- Check the sample plane of the contractor.