Wondering how long it will be before your old A/C unit finally breaks down and needs a costly replacement?

We know an A/C unit is a big expense. Still, for many years, consumers have heard that their systems need replacing from companies looking to make a big paycheck. But how can you tell if your A/C unit is about to break? In these hot Florida summers, we regularly see a system make its last stand on some of the hottest days when it has to work extremely hard just to keep the house at a consistent temperature. Of course, you’re left with unexpected repair bills for an A/C unit. Many times, when you can plan for those big surprises, you’re able to handle the situation with a lot more ease, but how can you tell?

When determining if you need a new A/C system or not, we recommend watching out for three things.

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A/C unit age

The general rule in the industry is that once an A/C unit reaches 10-15 years, replacing the unit is usually a much better investment than putting money into an older system. If your system is at that threshold, it’s usually wise to begin expecting, not wondering, when the system will fail.

Proper maintenance is a great way to extend the life of your system. So, make sure to take care of your A/C system, even if it’s new. If you don’t know your system’s age, that’s no problem at all. Write down the model and serial number from the manufacturer, and you can give them a call to ask them. If Kalos installed your system, our staff would also know the answer. We keep great records!


One mechanical clue to a system’s state is how efficiently the evaporator coil is performing. A function of the evaporator coil is humidity extraction, and as a unit ages past the normal life span, the system will not perform to its usual operational standards. These efficiency breakdowns leave the air more humid and can cause your space to feel clammy rather than cool. If an evaporator is prone to freezing or has mold growth, those may also be signs of an older coil.

 a/c unit humidity

Sharp rise in costs

As with the coil, the system overall loses efficiency as it ages. The SEER (seasonal energy efficiency ratio) of an older unit isn’t what it once was. As it loses each SEER increment, up to 9 percent of efficiency is lost. The result is an increase in your electric costs. If your utility costs are rising, and you’ve ruled out other causes, it’s more than likely that the age of the system is the greatest contributor.


Should you be planning to replace your Air Conditioner soon? Your A/C unit won’t last forever. Give a licensed, local expert a call and have a system evaluation done during your next maintenance. If you’re in Central Florida, visit our website to have one of our experts service your air conditioner with annual maintenance.