Eventually, your HVAC system will grow old. Then you will come across the need to decide if you want to repair or replace your system. This can be a difficult decision to make. You likely want to save as much money as possible. While repairs are generally less expensive, multiple repairs can really add up. Eventually, numerous repairs will become more expensive than installing a new system. 

This is where the decision gets challenging. Fortunately, B&L Ott is here to help guide you through the process. Read on to get an idea about how much certain repairs typically cost. You will also find some other helpful tips to help you through the process. 

Different HVAC Appliances and Equipment

  • Central Air Conditioner
  • Ductless Air Conditioner
  • Electric Furnace
  • Gas Furnace
  • Oil Furnace
  • Heat Pump
  • Geothermal Heat Pump
  • Electric Baseboard
  • Radiant Flooring
  • Boiler
  • Ducts and Vents
  • Attic Fan
  • Thermostat
  • Humidifier

Be Wary of Low HVAC Replacement Costs

Everyone wants to save money. However, if a price seems too good to be true, it usually is. If your HVAC replacement costs seem low, there are a few issues you should be wary about. This includes: 

HVAC Contractor Lacks Insurance

If your HVAC installer lacks proper insurance, they may offer you a lower price to install your new system. However, if they are injured on the job or cause damage, you will be held responsible. Be sure to hire a licensed HVAC contractor like B&L Ott to avoid these issues. 

HVAC Contractor is Unaware of Local and Federal HVAC Regulations

Depending on where your home is located, there may be local, regional, or federal regulations for your HVAC system. A professional HVAC contractor will be aware and help you make sure everything is in order. However, if your installer is unaware of these, they may offer a better price since they don’t have to deal with extra regulations or paperwork. 

HVAC Contractor Desperate for Jobs

If a contractor is desperate for job leads, they may offer a lower price to make whatever they can. However, this is generally a big warning sign. Hiring the wrong HVAC contractor simply because they have the lowest price, can cost you more in the long run. 

Pricing Errors

Errors are always a possibility when trying to determine the pricing for an HVAC installation. Be sure to review the quote to make sure everything is in order. 

What Can Affect the Cost of Your HVAC Replacement?

As you may notice, the costs of repairing and replacing an HVAC unit or equipment can vary greatly. This is because many different factors can cause the price to change. Below you will find some of the main factors that will affect your expenses. 

House Size

The cost of your HVAC system will likely depend on the size of the unit you need and the size of the unit you need depends on the size of your Berks County home. In general, a one-ton HVAC unit can warm or cool 400-600 sq/ft. Therefore the higher the square footage of your home, the larger system you need. Choosing the right size unit is extremely important as it can affect the overall efficiency of your system. Talk to a B&L Ott professional to find out what size HVAC unit you require. 

Need For Ductwork

If you are in the market for a central air system, the need for ductwork will also factor into your costs. If you already have ducts in your home, you may only need to pay for the unit. On the other hand, if you do need ductwork, you will have additional expenses. If you have ducts, but some are damaged, you may just need to replace a section of the ductwork. If you are looking to add a room or area to your system, you may also run into additional expenses. 


Brands are often associated with the level of quality. Some brands like Trane have excellent reputations while others do not. Therefore, the brand you choose can also affect the price. It is a good idea to do your research to make sure you make the best decision for your home and family. You can also talk to a B&L Ott professional if you lack the time to research properly. 

SEER Value

SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. It is used to measure the efficiency of a cooling unit. The higher the number, the more efficient the system. However, higher efficiency also means a higher price. While more efficient systems can generally save you more over time, they also have a higher initial cost. 

It is important to take all of this into account to determine what SEER rating is right for you. You don’t necessarily need the highest SEER rating, but you don’t want to go too low either. The best way to determine what SEER rating is best for you is to schedule a consultation with B&L Ott. 

Project Difficulty

Some installations are fairly simple while others are not. If your HVAC system is in a small or hard to access area, it could cost you a bit more. This is because it may require some customized parts and take more time. This isn’t something you can get away with skimping on either. If the job isn’t done right, it can cost you more in the long run. You may experience decreased efficiency or need more repairs. This is why choosing the right HVAC contractor is so important. 

Hidden Costs

There is also a chance that you may come across some hidden costs. These may not be included in your HVAC installation estimate, but you should factor them into your budget. Be sure to ask your HVAC contractor if these costs are included in the estimate. 

  • Permits – Some cities and counties have standards for HVAC units installed in homes and buildings. If this is the case, your HVAC system may need to be inspected to ensure it is up to code. 
  • Asbestos or Lead Paint – If you live in an older home, it may have asbestos or lead paint. If this is the case, you will likely have to pay to have your home tested, to remove any issues, or to replace contaminated materials. 
  • Remodeling – If the system requires more space or different placement, you can run into other costs. This can include plumbing, electrical work, removal of the existing system, modifying framing or surfaces, or anything else you need to bring your home or system up to code. 

When Should You Replace Your HVAC System?

When it comes down to it, choosing between repairing or replacing your system can get tricky. You don’t want to spend your money repairing it only for it to break down a month or two later. On the other hand, you don’t want to spend money on a new system if your current system just needs repair. Determining the status of your HVAC system can be complicated. The best way to determine the right course of action is to schedule a consultation with a B&L Ott professional. However, there are some significant signs that you should replace your system. 

Your Existing System is Aging

Every HVAC system has a life expectancy. Every model is different. However, most systems last 10-12 years. With this in mind, if your HVAC system is nearing the end of its life expectancy, you may want to replace it instead of repairing it. It is also worth noting that aspects such as poor maintenance and poor installation can shorten the life of your unit. Rising energy bills are also a sign that your HVAC system is not running at its full potential and might be nearing the end of its life. 

You Want to Increase Your Home’s Air Quality and Comfort

If your system is nearing the end of its life, it may not be providing the comfort you desire. You may notice uneven heating throughout your home. Your air quality may also suffer if your system can’t ventilate, filter, or adjust the humidity in your home. When you update your system, you can also have B&L Ott install various add-ons to help manage the air quality in your home. Some popular options include humidifiers, dehumidifiers, air purifiers, and filters. When your air is clean, properly humidified, and comfortable, your family will rest better, live healthier, and breathe easier. 

You Want to Upgrade to Smart Technology

HVAC technology continues to improve. Today Smart Technology makes controlling your home environment easier and more convenient than ever. Programmable or Smart thermostats allow you to program a schedule for your system to follow so you barely have to touch your thermostat. Most systems also allow you to change the temperature and humidity remotely via a smart device. 

Home zoning systems allow you to divide your home into sections via dampers in the air ducts so you can send the conditioned air exactly where you want it. Both of these devices can help you save energy and improve the comfort of your home. Talk to a B&L Ott professional to learn more. 

Consider Replacing Your Furnace and Air Conditioner At The Same Time

Another aspect you may want to consider is replacing your furnace and air conditioner at the same time. If both units are nearing the end of their life expectancy, it can benefit you to replace them together. Here are just a few of the main benefits. 


If you have a brand new high-efficiency system and keep your older system, you may not get the full efficiency out of your entire system. The old system will not contribute to the overall efficiency of your HVAC system. Then you end up with impractical expenses. On the other hand, if you replace both systems at the same time, they can both run efficiently and work together to save energy and money. 

Increase Lifespan

When your entire HVAC system is running as efficiently as possible and you keep up with regular maintenance, you will increase the life expectancy of your system. In fact, many B&L Ott customers who schedule regular maintenance have seen their system last beyond its life expectancy. 

No More Replacements for a While

The final benefit is convenience. When you replace your air conditioner and furnace together, you can get everything done in one shot. Then you won’t have to worry about HVAC replacements for a while. You also won’t have to take off work or move your schedule around again. 

Finding the Right HVAC Replacement Contractor

One of the most important aspects you need to get right when replacing an HVAC system is the contractor. Choosing the wrong one can bite you in the butt in the long run. Below you will find some helpful tips and advice to help you choose an HVAC contractor. 

Make Sure Your HVAC Contractor Is Fully Licensed

As mentioned before, you will want to make sure the HVAC contractor you choose is fully licensed. To get a license, an HVAC contractor needs to be an expert in the field. Therefore, by making sure your contractor is fully licensed, you can help ensure proper installation as well. 

If you choose an HVAC contractor without a license and something goes wrong, you could be held liable for any injuries or damage. This is why it is crucial to ensure your HVAC contractor is fully licensed. 

Look for Customer Reviews

Yet another great way to ensure quality is to research what other customers have to say about the HVAC contractor you have in mind. You should be able to find reviews all over the internet and social media. Look at their rating and read what the clients have to say about the contractor. If most of the reviews are good, you can expect quality installation. On the other hand, if there are too many negative reviews, you may want to look elsewhere. 

In addition to looking for reviews on the internet, you can also ask friends, family, and coworkers for suggestions. These people live in the same general area as you and you likely trust many of them. Therefore, they should be able to recommend a quality HVAC contractor for you if they have used similar services. 

Request That All Quotes and Pricing Be Provided in Writing

Another way to help protect yourself is to get all quotes and contracts in writing. This way, if something does go wrong, you have proof of what was agreed upon. A contract should include all expectations as far as tasks being performed as well as what is being charged. 

As mentioned before, it is also a good idea to ask what is included in the quote and what is not. Aspects such as permits, and work that brings your home up to code may not necessarily be included. It can be stressful to get hit with unexpected expenses. Therefore, it pays off to ensure you know all details before any work occurs. 

Be Wary of the Lowest Bidder 

Everyone wants to save money. Therefore, it can be tempting to go with the HVAC contractor that offers you the lowest price. However, this can also mean that they cut corners. If your new system is not installed properly, you can run into issues with efficiency, breakdowns, and more. Then it could end up costing you more in the long run. This is just one reason to be wary of the lowest bidder. 

Here are some other warning signs to be wary of:

  • Over the Phone Offers – To provide a proper quote, the HVAC contractor should visit your home or business building. 
  • Only-One-Brand Contractors – If an HVAC contractor only sells one brand of products, you could be missing out on something better. However, just because a contractor has a favorite brand, doesn’t mean they are trying to trick you. Just listen to what the contractor has to say, do a bit of research if necessary, and make the choice that sounds right to you. 
  • Replacing an Old System with the Same Model – A good HVAC contractor will want to help you improve your home’s efficiency and want to install a better model for you. If a contractor is trying to sell you the same exact model, they may be trying to get rid of their inventory. 

Count on B&L Ott to Help You Replace Your HVAC System

If you believe it is time to replace your HVAC system, the professionals at B&L Ott are happy to help you. We can help you assess your situation, choose the right model, and ensure it is installed properly. You can contact us through our website here: https://otthvac.com/contact-us/. You can also call us at 610-927-5133.