Is it Time to Replace my Commercial Cooling System?

Published on: May 22, 2018

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Heating and cooling systems, or HVAC systems, can last for years. Air conditioning systems do not need to be replaced often, but it’s best to pay attention.

Well-maintained heating and cooling systems, or HVAC systems, typically last for several years. Although air conditioning systems do not need to be replaced frequently, it’s best to pay close attention so that you can spot potential issues and be proactive when the time comes.

With the hot summers we experience in the Thompson Okanagan, having an air conditioner breakdown during a heat spell can be devastating for businesses, institutions and residential buildings. Here are some warning signs to watch out for so that you know when to have your cooling system checked out by a professional and possibly begin planning for a replacement.

Your cooling system is more than 15 years old

If your commercial air conditioning system has reached the 15 year mark, it’s probably time to consider a replacement. Despite how well-maintained your HVAC system has been over the years, and even if it doesn’t seem to be experiencing any major issues, this is the recommended lifespan for most systems.

At this point, by replacing your cooling system, you will avoid sinking money into repairs for an aging system that likely won’t last much longer anyway. As well, many older AC units still run on R-22 refrigerant which is harmful for the environment and is being phased out by the federal government by increasing levies and prices for the customer.

Your building is experiencing uneven temperatures

Are you, your employees or your customers noticing hot or cold spots throughout your building? Is it becoming increasingly difficult to achieve a comfortable temperature?

Uneven or inconsistent temperatures can be a sign that your cooling system is aging and no longer working as well as it used to. It’s possible that your HVAC system simply needs a servicing or a repair job, but if the issue persists, a replacement may be required.

Your utility bills are increasing unexpectedly

If your energy and utility bills seem a lot higher than last year, but your usage is the same, then your cooling system may not be running as efficiently anymore.

As heating and cooling systems age, they tend to become less efficient, and therefore use more energy to achieve the same results.

There are a few ways to help keep your energy costs down in the summer months, which you can learn more about here. Regular maintenance will also help keep your systems running more efficiently and therefore save on utility bills, which is why many building operators will sign up for preventative maintenance programs. However, if these tactics no longer help, it might be time for a new system.

You’re spending a lot on repairs

Does it seem like there is always something wrong with your cooling system? Are you constantly calling technicians and spending money on repairs? Has it been getting worse over the last year or so?

If you have an older HVAC system and it seems to be broken more often than it’s working, then you guessed it - it’s probably time to consider installing a new system instead of spending more money on the old one you’re using.

The air quality in your building is poor

Your cooling system can affect your building’s air quality. If you notice an excessive amount of dust or dryness in the air, it could mean that your HVAC system isn’t working efficiently.

This is very important as it can affect the health of those occupying the building, so if you notice poor air quality, contact an HVAC contractor to check it out.

Something just seems off

If something looks, smells or sounds strange with your air conditioning system, then it’s time to at least have it checked out by a professional.

If you see rust or condensation on your system, there is a strange smell in your building, or your system is making disruptive noises, call an HVAC technician to determine if the issue is repairable or not.

If you’re concerned about the cooling system in your business, institution or commercial building in Kelowna or elsewhere in the Thompson Okanagan, Kimco can help. Contact us to book an appointment.

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