How Long Do AC Units Last?

Your central air conditioning unit in your home is what keeps you cool all summer. The compressor is the heart of your unit and once it goes, it’s likely time to replace the entire unit. Now the compressor can certainly be replaced, but should you is the real question. I recently had to replace my entire HVAC recently so I thought I’d share a bit about my experience and answer a question for you. How long do ac units last?

So let’s get straight to it.

How long do ac units last?

First, let’s go back to the compressor. The compressor moves refrigerant between the evaporator and condenser coils. Somehow, this is what’s responsible for the cold air that blows out of our vents. When the compressor goes out, it’s likely time to replace the entire unit, unless it’s still under warranty which is possible.

I’m not an a/c repairmen nor do I have special knowledge of how to repair an HVAC unit. I am however a homeowner and just had to shell out some major bucks for a brand new unit.

I’ve had a flurry of repairmen in and out of here over the last week talking about various units and how long they last. My HVAC unit lasted 27 years, which is quite long considering that the new unit has a warranty of 10 years.

10 years seems like a respectable warranty, so when you consider that the previous unit lasted almost 3 times that it’s pretty impressive.

Most ac units are going to last anywhere from 10-15 years on average, depending on the model and the company that made it. My new American Standard unit has a 10 year warranty as I mentioned, a Trane ac unit is up to 20 years.

The guy who installed my unit said that he just replaced a 39 year old HVAC recently! That’s almost as old as I am.

Final notes

How long your particular unit lasts is going to depend on many different factors. Such as how well it was taken care of, the brand and model, and how much it was used. Then there’s probably an element of luck as well.

Just keep in mind that maintenance and upgrades should be done on your schedule if possible. Sure, you might get lucky and have one last for 39 years, but it’s unlikely. If your ac unit is over 15-20 years old and you have the money to replace it, it might be time to start thinking about it.