We have heard all kinds of questions over the years, but one that was a bit of a doozy was, “Should I replace my HVAC or my window?” The HVAC unit is 17 years old and the windows are drafty and only half functioning. You’re on a limited budget, so which do you do first? (That was the gist of it.)
There really is no question here. If your HVAC goes, and it can’t be repaired, it’s time to replace it. But well maintained HVAC can go for years and years beyond average life expectancy. Never skim on proper maintenance, and ask the inspector/cleaning service folks to explain all parts of their inspection to make sure you comprehend all the factors before making any decisions about your HVAC.
Think of your windows as being your bucket that gets filled by your HVAC. If you have holes your bucket you will have to keep filling it which is a double wammy. Your HVAC will have to kick on and off many times which impacts your compressor (somethign that can break 😉 in the summer months, which will wear down your AC unit in particular. But that’s not all. Your spending more money to fill a leaky bucket if your windows are the weak spot in your home retaining the hot or cold generated by your energy dollars. So not replacing your windows when you know they are inefficient means you are jepordizing both the HVAC longevity itself, and your monthly bills will be higher.
Pros for Replacing Windows First (if there is no safety concern regarding your HVAC):
- New replacement windows could lower the needed size of the HVAC unit, which would save you money long term.
- Improving the sealing of your home’s protective shell, or the “bucket” which holds all your energy dollars first is often the best strategy.
- A properly maintained (and regularly maintained) HVAC system has a life expectancy of between 15 and 25 years, so get it inspected to judge its health. You may have longer than you realize.
- Windows can be replaced over time. You don’t have to take on a large expense all at once. Some customers, with espeically large number of windows will do the whole first floor one year, and the upper floor(s) in subsequent years.
- How much do you use or need AC in Dayton Ohio? This is often a matter of preference, but those without allergies who prefer fresh air, might appreciate all the benefits of opening up replacement windows during the Spring, Summer and Fall, versus running the new AC.
Reminder: Never delay servicing or maintaining your HVAC.