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How Long Does an Air Conditioner Last on Average?

Studies show that about 90% of all American homes have air conditioning of some sort. It’s something that we can often take for granted until it starts breaking down.

This begs the question: how long does an air conditioner last?


When should you expect to replace yours? And what are the warning signs?


That’s what we’re here to answer today. Read on to find out the average air conditioner lifespan and when you should be replacing an AC unit.

  • Determinants of Air Conditioning Life Span
  • So How Long Does an Air Conditioner Last?
  • Understand Your AC Unit’s Lifespan Today

Determinants of Air Conditioning Life Span

So what determines your air conditioner’s life span?

Well, like most things in life, it depends. Different variables inform you of how long your air conditioner lasts, but usage is definitely the strongest component.

If you constantly use your air conditioner, it unsurprisingly can limit your AC unit’s life span. The extent to which you maintain your AC unit also determines how long they last.

So How Long Does an Air Conditioner Last?

A well-made central air conditioning unit can last about 12 to 17 years depending on how often it’s used. So if your AC unit is relatively new, then you probably won’t have to replace it for about a decade.

Like we said, however, there are plenty of variables for your AC unit’s life span. Let’s go over some warning signs that your air conditioning needs replacing here:

Your AC Uses Freon

If your AC unit is pretty old, there’s a chance it uses a refrigerant called “Freon.” The reason you want to replace your air conditioner if it does is that Freon was basically phased out of the market decades ago.

If your AC unit leaks or has issues, you’ll be facing a pretty heft bill. Why not just replace your air conditioner with something more modern and eco-friendly?

Uncomfortable Noises

It’s normal for AC units to make strange noises, but if they start getting louder and more concerning, it’s time to make a switch. Squealing, grinding, or clattering noises are definitely things you shouldn’t be hearing from your machine.

These are indicators of issues with your AC’s blowers, motors, and fans. If they get bad enough, it’s reason enough to get a new AC unit.

Installation Issue

Whether it’s because you DIY-ed it or your contractor missed a few steps, AC units are susceptible to improper installation. Proper installation is key to your AC unit’s longevity, no matter the make or model.

This can cause a lot more damage to your system, and lead to broken down AC units.

Too Many Repairs

Have you noticed that your AC unit constantly needs repairs? There’s a good chance that replacing your air conditioner altogether might be the more economical option.

If you’ve been bogged down by constant repairs, consider getting a new AC unit instead.

Understand Your AC Unit’s Lifespan Today

Understanding how long your AC unit should last is crucial for your home and family. Use this article to answer the age-old question of “how long does an air conditioner last” and make the right choices today!

Looking for reliable air conditioner repair and installation? Contact us today and we’ll get you started on a solution right away!

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