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Broken Heater or AC: Repair or Replace?

Do you have a broken heating and air conditioning system?

The decision to repair your existing heating and air system or to replace it with a new one takes careful consideration.  At Bonney, we service and install all brands of heating and air equipment. To help you make the best decision, evaluate the following issues according to your priorities:

1) Economics

Initially, a new system costs more than a repair.  However, in certain situations, it just doesn’t make sense to repair old equipment.


If your HVAC equipment is more than 12-15 years old, and you have a repair, it could be the beginning of things to come.  The first repair is a good time to get a thorough evaluation of your existing system.  Bonney’s NATE certified technicians can give you an excellent understanding of the condition of existing components and the cost to replace those components as they fail. Most systems less than 10 years old should be repaired.  Bonney systems are available with 10 year parts and labor warranties.  We can check with your equipment manufacturer to see if your system is covered under warranty.

Failed Component

Certain major components are so expensive to repair, that it’s better to use that money as a down payment on a new system.  Two components require special consideration:  compressor and heat exchanger.  These parts are not only expensive to repair, but their failure can be an indicator of installation deficiencies that are shortening the life of your equipment.  If the compressor or heat exchanger has failed, equipment replacement is usually the best decision. Other failed parts are not usually an indicator to replace your system.


How much do you use your heating and air system?  If you don’t use it very often, a repair makes more sense than a replacement.  However, if you use your system frequently, then upgrading to a new one will provide larger energy savings.  The more you use it, the more you will save on energy bills.


Many industry changes over the last decade have created highly efficient comfort systems.  The changes mean that your home can be heated or cooled with less energy use, thereby reducing your energy bill, sometimes drastically!  Lennox and Rheem are both cutting edge brands installed by Bonney that reflect the highest in available efficiencies. The newer your system is, the more efficient it is and the more likely a repair would be appropriate.


If you choose to finance your new system, the monthly payments are frequently less than the dollars saved from efficiency.  This is especially true for homes in which an older system is used frequently.  In other words, some customers will actually save money on a monthly basis by replacing the heating and air system.

Rebates & Tax Credits

Some manufacturers and utilities offer rebates back to customers who upgrade to energy efficient systems.  These incentives aren’t always offered.  If they are available when your system breaks, they could be a significant reason to replace instead of repair. Learn more about the current rebates.

2)  Comfort

Sometimes a system will operate, but it just doesn’t work well.  Bonney addresses the following factors when a new system is installed.  Any of these problems can severely affect your comfort:  Repairing a system will not address these issues, but your Bonney technician may be able to offer an improvement in these areas with other products.


Certain parts of your home can be hotter and cooler because air is transferring through parts of walls, floors, ceilings, windows and doors.  These drafts may not be noticeable, but can create hot and cold spots in your home.  Envelope air sealing is a service that Bonney provides and can be included as part of a new heating and air system installation.


Another way to address the hot and cold spots is through zoning.  New technology allows you to have the temperature you want, in the place you want, when you want it.  In other words, you can have different temperatures in different rooms of your home.  Or, you can reduce the hot and cold spots by meeting the demands of different parts of your home more effectively.  Bonney features Honeywell zoning products among other quality brands.


Bonney installs fantastic controls by Honeywell and Emerson that allow you to adjust the temperatures throughout your home, or even a second home, via telephone, internet or phone apps.  Or, in your home, you can use a wireless portable comfort control to do the same thing.  If you wish, you can see the current outdoor temperature and humidity right on your thermostat and get today’s weather report at the same time.  What if there is a problem?  We can even establish notifications that alert you and Bonney to potential problems with your system.  A little too high tech?  Well, we can install the basic round thermostat that you grew up with!

3) Reliability

One big problem with an old system is that it always seems to break down when you need it the most.  The hottest days of the year create the biggest load on your air conditioning system, so that is when it is most likely to break.  If the following issues are important to you, a system replacement would be your best decision.  If you don’t have these concerns, and can tolerate a little inconvenience, then repairing your system may be a better decision.


Is someone in your home especially sensitive to extreme temperatures?  Older people, children, and people with health issues can suffer as a result of a broken heating and air system.  A new system is the best way to have a system working properly to protect those who really need comfortable temperatures.


An unplanned break down can ruin your whole day, or your whole week!!  Even though Bonney does everything we can to reach our customers in a timely manner, we all have better things to do than to meet a repair man.  A new, reliable system frees you from that long wait.


With the financing options mentioned above, you can plan your expenses.  A surprise heating or cooling failure creates an immediate, and often unbudgeted, expense.  A new system, however, not only reduces your energy costs, but allows you to stay in budget too.