How to Lengthen the Lifespan of an AC Unit

Your air conditioner is an investment that is both critical to your quality of life and costly in both installation and energy. Everyone wants to save money by getting the most out of their air conditioner, but not everyone knows how. Let Coastal Climate Experts guide you in getting the most outstanding longevity from your air conditioner. Read on to find tips and tricks to get your money’s work out of your air conditioner’s lifespan.

how often to replace air filters

How Long Will My HVAC System Last?

Many factors determine the lifespan of your central air conditioner. The average lifespan of an AC unit is 15-20 years, and HVAC units for up to 30 years, but some can last much longer with proper maintenance. The first factor in your AC unit’s longevity is the quality of installation. If you’ve ever seen an improperly installed AC unit, it will likely have a shorter lifespan. That’s why finding a reputable contractor to install your air conditioner is crucial.

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Location Is Important!

Another factor in your AC unit’s lifespan is its location. If your air conditioner is in a shaded area, it will have a longer lifespan than one in direct sunlight. This precaution is because the sun can cause wear and tear on the unit, which will shorten its lifespan.

You must also keep the area around your air conditioner free of debris like grass and leaves. These foreign objects can block your air conditioner’s vents and make it work harder than it needs to. Keep the grass around your air conditioner trimmed, and don’t allow bushes, trees, and other plant life to grow too close to the unit. After a storm, always check your air conditioner to ensure it has no obstructions. Just make sure to turn your air conditioner off first before doing your inspection.

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Change Your Filters Periodically

One of the most important things you can do to lengthen your AC unit’s lifespan is to change the filters regularly. This change will help to keep the unit clean and free of debris that can cause it to work harder than necessary. Air conditioner filters are designed to get dirty because they catch dirt, dust, and other particles that would otherwise make their way into your home.


However, a filter that has gone for too long without being changed will make your air conditioner work harder than it needs to. A dirty filter can lead to mechanical problems and breakdowns if left unchecked. The rule of thumb is to change your filters once every three months or once every two months if you have pets.

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Keep Your AC Clean

Another way to lengthen the lifespan of your AC unit is to keep it clean. Like grass and leaves, dirt and dust can easily obstruct your air conditioner’s vents. This problem has the same effect: unnecessarily makes your air conditioner labor. You should regularly clean the exterior of the unit as well as the interior. While cleaning, you can inspect your unit for any visible damage that might lead to problems. One easy way to ensure that your air conditioner stays clean is to place it on a concrete pad on flat and level ground, preventing rainwater from flooding the unit.

old air conditioner

Schedule Regular Maintenance and Tune-Ups

In addition to changing the filters and keeping the unit clean, you should also schedule regular maintenance and tune-ups. This measure will help to ensure that the unit is running correctly and that any potential problems are caught early. You should schedule maintenance and tune-ups to happen during the spring so any problem can be solved and your air conditioner will be ready for the summer heat. Demand for AC maintenance and repairs also tends to be lower during the spring, so you will probably have an easier time scheduling an appointment.

Tune-ups comprise several different services. A certified HVAC technician will inspect your air conditioner’s components, clean its interior and condensate pan, top up its refrigerant, and review your outdoor unit for damage and obstructions. Having these regular maintenance and tune-ups scheduled is so critical to an efficient air conditioner that some power companies will offer a rebate to customers who periodically have their units maintained and tuned up. An optimized HVAC system with regular maintenance can save you up to 20% on your power bills, so you have every incentive to take good care of your air conditioner.


Use Basic Protection

Another way to help lengthen the lifespan of your AC unit is to use essential protection. You might be surprised by how effective these simple changes can be. Putting up an awning to shade your air conditioner to shadow it is one solution if you can’t get natural shade. While you should keep plants far away from your AC to keep sources of obstructions away from the vents, a well-placed tree can help shield your air conditioner from the sun and the wind.

ac install

Get A Smart Thermostat

Investing in a smart thermostat is another great way to help lengthen the lifespan of your AC unit. A smart thermostat will allow you to control the temperature in your home better, which can help reduce wear and tear on the unit. You can turn your air conditioner off while you are away from home by using your smartphone, ordering it to turn on in preparation for your return, so it cools efficiently.

The best feature of a smart thermostat is that it will help optimize your air conditioner’s operation. By setting your smart thermostat to a particular temperature and humidity range, you can ensure your air conditioner only works hard when needed. Under these conditions, the fans run low, and the compressor is regulated for efficiency. A smart thermostat can even warn you of problems or a need for maintenance, ensuring that you keep your air conditioner operating at its best. All of these measures increase your air conditioner’s efficiency and lifespan.

programmable thermostat

Give Your AC A Break

You should try to give your AC unit a break when possible. Running your air conditioner at all times makes it wear out quickly. This means you should turn it off or set it to a higher temperature when you are away from home. Try using fans to keep cool in the absence of air conditioning. Doing this will help to reduce the amount of work that the unit has to do and can help to prolong its life.

New HVAC System

Turn Off Electronics and Dry Your Clothes At Night

During the day, your home is filled with electronic devices that produce heat. These devices can cause your AC unit to work harder than necessary. To help reduce the workload of your AC unit, you should turn off electronics and dry your clothes at night. Clothes dryers put off large amounts of heat, which makes your air conditioner work much harder than it needs to.

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Upgrade Your Insulation

If you live in an older home, your insulation is probably not up to today’s standards. Poor insulation can cause your AC unit to work harder than necessary to keep your home cool. To help prolong the life of your AC unit, you should upgrade your insulation.

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Call Coastal Climate Experts

The best way to get the most out of your air conditioner is to call Coastal Climate Experts. We have served Melbourne, Merritt Island, Cocoa Beach, and surrounding areas for over a decade by offering fair prices and exceptional service. Our company works with all types of systems and is dedicated to establishing a lasting relationship with our customers. Call us today to extend the longevity of your air conditioner!


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