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Central Air Conditioner Prices

Summer is here and it may be time to replace the central air conditioner in your home. Even if it's not time to replace yet but you know it's coming soon, having an idea of central air conditioner prices is a must! In this article, we cannot give exact prices of central ac due to all the differences in each persons home, but we can share what you can expect from the different brands and sizes. If you aren't quite ready to replace, you may want to check the air conditioner repair guide as well.

Central Air Conditioner Prices 2010

If you prefer to skip through the article and get straight to prices for your home, you can get 3 free quotes by following the link below.

There are four main factors that go into a contractor presenting you with a central ac price. The main factors are:

  1. Size of the Central Air Conditioner
  2. The Brand you Choose to Install
  3. The Efficiency of the New System
  4. The Installation Cost of the Central Air Conditioner

Central Air Conditioner Size

The SIZE of your homes AC system is going to be one of the first levers in the overall price of your new central air conditioner system!

While I realize this may sound obvious:

The Bigger the Air Conditioner > The Higher the Cost!

For example, wholesale costs may be in the following ranges:

  • 1-Ton Central AC: $450-$1,000
  • 2-Ton: $500-$1,100
  • 3-Ton Central Air Conditioners: $500-$1,400
  • 4-Ton AC Units: $650-$1,800
  • 5-Ton Air Conditioners: $750-$2,200

Central Air Conditioner Brand Variables

The brand you decide to go with is also going to have quite an impact on the central air conditioner price you pay, and while some higher cost brands have higher quality parts, others are just higher priced!

On the higher end of the brand scale, you are going to find brands like Carrier, Trane, American Standard, Lennox, Amana, etc. You will immediately recognize that these brands are all over your TV set with commercials, all over billboards, and also tend to have the best HVAC contractors in town selling their brand. That added exposure and quality costs a bit more money.

On the lower end of the scale, you have brands like Bryant, Goodman, Rheem, Comfort Maker, etc.  Before we get into the quality of the parts inside these lower priced units, I want to reiterate one thing… most of these brands are identical to their higher end counterpart!

If you have your heart set on a Carrier Infinity System, make sure you also get a price on a Bryant Evolution system, they are the same!

Central AC Efficiency Cost

Aside from the size of your system, the efficiency of the unit is going to have the second biggest effect on the central air conditioner price you pay! Higher Efficiency = Higher Up Front Cost!

The higher unit SEER you want, the more you will save on energy usage, but you will also pay a premium at the point of purchase! Another benefit of choosing a higher SEER unit is that you might qualify for the Federal Energy Tax Credit of up to $1500 for efficiency improvements.

Since we we know that a higher seer rating saves money on utilities, it only makes sense to get the highest you can afford at the time of installation.

It's also worth mentioning that going from 15 to 21 SEER is not as simple as installing a different condenser outside. Regardless of brand, the higher efficiency depends on a combination of the three main components, AC Condenser, Evaporator Coil and Air handler or Gas Furnace unit.

Speaking of installation…

HVAC Installation Variables

The one main area that no amount of estimating can cover without talking to you, is the installation! Anyone in the HVAC industry will tell you the same thing, The Installation Makes ALL the Difference!

You can take the highest quality Carrier Infinity System and completely botch it with a shoddy installation! Aside from the loss of efficiency on a poor installation, you may also void the warranty!

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One thought on “Central Air Conditioner Prices

  • May 19, 2011 at 8:26 pm

    This is a good article. Lets me know what to factor in when I go buy a new unit. I’m going to check our some of these brands of ac units.

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