AC Unit Installation: How Long Does it Take to Replace?

You’re in your thinnest shorts, with the ceiling fan going, a box fan, and a hand fan, and you’re still boiling hot— you need your AC fixed ASAP. 🥵 When you can’t take another minute of the summer’s heat with a broken AC, you want it repaired and fast. But how long does it take to replace an AC unit? You’ll love this answer— it depends.

Yes, unfortunately, when you have a professional HVAC team inspect your air conditioner only to determine that repairs won’t cut it and it needs to be replaced, the first thing you think is, “How long before I have a new system?” The timeline for a project like this can depend on many factors, including:

  • Scope of the project
  • Type of AC being installed
  • Availability
  • The location of your AC unit

All these things considered, for the most part, you can expect an AC replacement to take between 2 and 8 hours. Let’s dive into more details so you can plan ahead for when the unthinkable happens, and you’re left fanning yourself to cool off!

8 Signs You Need to Replace Your Air Conditioning System

First things first— how do you know it’s time to replace your AC unit vs. repair it? There are a few tell-tale signs that, yes, can indicate a repair is needed, but also symptoms of AC replacement.

Oftentimes the cost of repairs inch so close to the cost of replacement that it might be your best bet. If you notice any of these signs, it’s definitely time to get a professional inspection of your system to determine whether to repair or replace it.

1) Your Unit is Over 15-20 Years Old ⌛

older ac unit in need of replacement or repairs

Most AC units are only meant to last between 15 and 20 years, so if your unit is nearing or past its intended lifespan, a replacement is likely in order. Even if it’s still running, it’s likely not working as efficiently as it can, and its days are numbered.

2) The System Only Blows Warm Air 🫠

When your AC is only blowing warm air, it could mean a few things. It could be an issue with your compressor, or it could also indicate issues with the ducts themselves. Either way, a professional inspection is vital to determine the root cause.

3) Higher-Than-Normal Energy Bills 📈

If your energy bill is significantly higher than normal, that’s a sure sign that your AC unit isn’t running efficiently — and it might be time for an upgrade. This can happen because the unit is starting to work twice as hard to cool your home. It’s likely costing you more money to continue running the old system than it would cost to replace it.

4) Unit is Leaking Water or Freon 💦

If your AC unit is leaking water or Freon, it’s a sure sign that something isn’t right. Leaking can be caused by damaged components of the system, and repairs might not be a viable option.

5) You Experience Moisture and Humidity Issues 🌡️

If you experience moisture or humidity issues in your home, it could indicate that the system isn’t working as efficiently as it should. The same is true if your AC keeps cycling on and off frequently — a sign of an inefficient system.

6) Weird Noises Coming From the Unit 🔊

If your AC starts making strange noises, such as knocking, buzzing, or rattling, it could be a sign that something is wrong with the system. A professional can inspect and diagnose what’s causing the noise.

7) Air Blowing From the Vents is Weak or Low 🌬️

poor air flow from air conditioner in need of repair

If the air blowing from your vents is weak or low, it could be an issue with the compressor, or with dirty air filters. But if all these things check out, it might be time to get a new system.

8) Odd Smells Coming From Vents or AC Unit 👃

If your AC is emitting strange smells, like a musty or burning smell, it could be a sign that something is wrong like dirty air filters or an electrical issue. Get an inspection ASAP to prevent further damage or risk of fire.

At the end of the day, if you suspect any of these signs might indicate you need a new AC unit, it’s best to get a professional opinion. They can let you know if repairs are needed or if it’s time for an upgrade. Knowing the signs of when to replace your system will help you plan ahead and stay cool all summer long!

How Long Does AC Installation Take?

Installing a new AC system can take anywhere from 2-8 hours, depending on the size of the unit and the complexity of the installation.

That said, it’s always best to be proactive and take care of your AC system before the heat hits. Regular maintenance, proactive inspections, and annual AC tune-ups can help prevent any major repairs or replacements down the line.

Factors That Affect How Long It’ll Take to Replace an Air Conditioner

Square Footage: The size of your home is an important factor when it comes to how long it’ll take to install a new AC unit. Larger homes will require larger units, which take longer to install.

Accessibility: If the area where you want the AC installed has limited accessibility, this can also increase installation time. For example, high-rise structures, fenced-in areas, second floors, etc., can all prove difficult to install vs. the standard back or side of the house, which is easily accessible.

Type of Unit: Depending on the type of unit you’re installing, it may take longer or shorter to install. A standard split AC system has two components—the condenser and the evaporator coil—that must be installed separately. On the other hand, a ductless mini-split only requires that one component be installed since the air handler is already built-in.

smaller air conditioning unit for faster repairs

Location of the Unit: Where you install your AC unit can also affect the installation time. Some locations require more access than others, which could increase the amount of time it takes to make sure everything is working properly.

Size of the Unit: The size of the unit also plays an important role when it comes to installation times. Smaller units can be installed relatively quickly, but larger units require more work and may take longer to install.

Replacement vs. New Install: Finally, the installation time also depends on if you’re replacing an existing unit or installing a new one. Replacing an AC system is usually quicker since many of the components are already in place. Whereas installing a new system takes much longer since all of the components must be installed correctly.

Regardless of your situation, it’s important to get professional help when it comes to AC installation and replacement. A qualified technician will have the experience and knowledge needed to make sure your unit is properly and safely installed in a timely manner.

Look to Aquarius for Professional AC Replacement

Aquarius Home Services is the go-to source for professional and reliable AC replacement and installation services. We provide fast and affordable service that’s tailored to your specific needs.

We understand the importance of a properly working air conditioner for keeping you comfortable in the summer heat. That’s why we offer our customers a 100% performance guarantee. If anything goes wrong in the first year after installation, we’ll make it right for free.

If you need help with your AC system, don’t hesitate to contact us today. Our knowledgeable technicians are here to answer all of your questions and provide solutions that fit your needs and budget. We look forward to helping you stay cool this summer.

Jack Livingston
Jack Livingston
1721093363
Nicholas was an extremely helpful technician. He was thorough and fixed our issue at a reasonable cost. We were impressed with the customer service we got both from him and everyone at Aquarius. Thanks for getting us in within 24 hours, fixing our air conditioning and explaining what was going on.
Sandy Oldeen
Sandy Oldeen
1721089662
Mike Lauer from Aquarius came to service my A/C. Mike was so kind in informing me of my options. He had my trust right away. In the end I purchased a new unit. Mike is definitely an asset to Aquarius. Thanks for the good service Mike!
Karen Arcand
Karen Arcand
1721088008
Leigh Griffith
Leigh Griffith
1720985156
Nick did a nice job of showing us what was affecting our AC and the problems that were looming with our furnace.
Scott Moore
Scott Moore
1720976548
The technician worked hard and did a great job.
Mary Cole
Mary Cole
1720816564
Had technician, Nathan come to perform yearly check on AC Very knowledgeable and explained everything. Bonus points for fixing the pesky rattle from the ductwork!
Jessica McDougall
Jessica McDougall
1720815008
Aquarius has consistently been great at fast response times, responsive communication, and willingness to teach about the maintenance procedures they perform. We will never go back to anyone else!
Nancy Melvin
Nancy Melvin
1720809794
Provided prompt and professional service.
Sean M
Sean M
1720808556
Stephen Clonkey
Stephen Clonkey
1720801379
Riley was very thorough and communicated with us very well.
Jessica Kohl
Jessica Kohl
1720723436
Mike C was my technician and he was AWESOME, very nice, knowledgeable, respectful inside my home (wore booties, didn’t touch newly painted walls, even picking up clumps of insulation on the carpet and putting in his pocket so it wasn’t on the floor, turning off lights) he was great!
Tim Peterson
Tim Peterson
1720718604
Highly recommend Aquarius Home Services. Mike was very professional and explained everything in easy to understand detail. Keep up the good work!
Natalia Yasama
Natalia Yasama
1720656615
There is no better technician than Riley !Very professional, honest , perfectionist. 11 stars service .
Karl Witt
Karl Witt
1720640365
Super great experience! Air conditioning went out at 10 o’clock in the morning and the technician arrived here by 1:45 and completed the repair in less than 45 minutes. Graham, the technician, was really awesome and did a great job with repair.
Bonster Bon
Bonster Bon
1720639807
He did a good job representing your company young man explain things thank you Ethan
JD Smith
JD Smith
1720631805
Excellent deal, sales person, and installation techs. Staff are friendly, they listen to you, and are professional! Two thumbs up! Thank you Thomas, Mick, and Jeff!
Hans Schroeder
Hans Schroeder
1720627228
Mary Schmuland
Mary Schmuland
1720616091
Professional, proficient, courteous, and going above and beyond! We were extremely satisfied with John and his plumbing services; removed garbage disposal, connected new faucet and soap dispenser, rectified hook-up with Aquarius water filter to our refrigerator, and installed new sink drains. He was prompt, worked in a congested cabinet, and did a superb job with attention to details. Would be glad to trust him and his expertise, again! Pleasant and focused!
Carmelo Panetta
Carmelo Panetta
1720569940
Brandon did a great job cleaning five mini split airconditioning, including fixing a broken one.
Ayrlahn Johnson
Ayrlahn Johnson
1720566419
The Boogieman came out and fixed our furnace and AC in one fell swoop. Got them both working. We were heated up a bit but now Cooler heads 😎 are prevailing!
Gregg Barker
Gregg Barker
1720566016
Riley and Brent did an awesome job. The communication with scheduling and knowing when someone was coming was frustrating as the time kept changing.
Becky Hansen
Becky Hansen
1720565057
No pressure sales appointment tget went over all tge options, got an appointment with 3 days to have the install. The install guys gave ne s call ahead. They put in the nee furnace & AC unit, explained what they did and also showed us. They took ff the service call charge as we bought the units as it was not worth fixing (our AC was 41 years old we found out) Travis Lee and his partner were professional and very knowledgeable. Would highly recommend Aquarius
Denise Bratvold
Denise Bratvold
1720545466
Another seamless experience with Aquarius Home Services. The timely communication with Jeremy from before arrival continued as he worked through my water heater problem and options for solutions. Would highly recommended AHS.
LaNae Christenson
LaNae Christenson
1720536581
Chris came to evaluate a slow leak and quickly found the source of the problem. He gave the best and worst case scenario and got to work right away. I appreciated his candor and professionalism throughout the entire process and am very pleased with the result. I would definitely call again if needed.
Barb Galvez
Barb Galvez
1720535493
Tech was awesome, friendly and very well qualified for my AC tune ups.
melissa goldman
melissa goldman
1720478062
Just can't say enough good things about Aquarius. We've general contracted a couple of our own homes and have never worked with such professional, knowledgeable and kind people. We had a Kinetico system installed that Brian coordinated. Even though we have Kinetico water filtration in other homes and are familiar, he pointed out things that we didn't know. Paul worked on our plumbing and was equally wonderful. Just made everything so easy. We had a sizeable amount of electrical work done by Dave and AJ and Erik. Absolutely top shelf every step of the way. AJ even, on his own time, went in search of a scarce part we needed to finish the upgrades. He found it and finished in one day! AJ really went above and beyond throughout. They all did. Truly so grateful to the teams and can't recommend them highly enough.
Linda Thompson
Linda Thompson
1720473879
They installed a tank less water heater. We were very impressed with their work. Very knowledgeable and courteous. A GREAT team.
Matt Schifsky
Matt Schifsky
1720470294
Quick response to a cut gas line. Friendly technician.
Lee Daniels
Lee Daniels
1720466379
If i could give zero stars i would. Contacted who we thought was Freedom Heating and Air a local small business and got Aquarius a greedy corporation. Got a quote over the phone of $98 to install a new smart thermostat that we purchased. Technician came out less than 30 minutes it was installed since the smart thermostat is hardwired into our furnace. Then was told the cost was $345! Talk about bait and switch. This company is a total scam. Asked to speak with someone with customer care….still waiting. Finding a new company for any future needs. Avoid this Aquarius. They ruined a perfectly good small business. DO NOT RECOMMEND! Avoid! Call someone else!
Robert Abbott
Robert Abbott
1720459912
Dave did an electric panel inspection and house wiring inspection. He was extremely professional and broke everything down into language i understood. You are my electric repair company of choice because of the great and professional employees you have working for you! I’d say it was 5 star service as usual!!!
Janet Boeckmann
Janet Boeckmann
1720457435
Eric was the service guy who came out to do a check upOn our water conditioner. He was on time, very professional and explained what he did. We would highly recommend Aquarius home services !
Joan Holmes
Joan Holmes
1720453542
We had a great experience with the entire team from sales to water treatment team. We were so pleased that we took your offer to have our furnace tuned up by your people. Thank you!
Kay Wortman
Kay Wortman
1720280580
They are real thorough and good at what they do. Very clean and clean everything when they are done could not even tell they were there at all .Problem with sink all fixed.would highly recommend them.
EDWIN MEKENYE
EDWIN MEKENYE
1720237776
Knowledgeable technicians, professional and simply marvelous in what they do.Boss, kindly give them a raise!
Myra Kunas
Myra Kunas
1720228638
Great service. Was able to come out the same day to help with a plumbing issue and even showed me a bunch of helpful information about our water softener that has plagued me for 15 years. Highly recommend.
William Green
William Green
1720215619
Tech diagnosed problem and replaced part. Quick service. I would do business with them again and recommend them four you service needs
Joe Y
Joe Y
1720215261
Mary
Mary
1720213282
Ethan was very professional and thorough. Easy to discuss details of the service. I would recommend Aquarius.
Don Meyers
Don Meyers
1720212412
I appreciated the thorough inspection and the care and maintenance advice. Unfortunately our concern with the system was due to the length of travel with the duct work. So no increase in cooling.
Steven Emert
Steven Emert
1720206147
Very thorough, knowledgeable, up front about what is and isn’t needed, costs.
Jackie Anderson
Jackie Anderson
1720200877
Michael Russo
Michael Russo
1720189389
As always, outstanding, communicative customer service and Nick the technician gave my furnace a head to toe tune up. The best
karyn proulx
karyn proulx
1720147687
Anita Prairie
Anita Prairie
1720046929
Christiane Ickx
Christiane Ickx
1720045544
They did one outstanding job! I would highly recommend them!
Pam Borgan
Pam Borgan
1720042057
Riley was an amazing technician and explained everything totally. I would highly recommend him to anyone.
Bob Singleton
Bob Singleton
1720038418
Techs were on time, friendly and skilled. I had a bigger problem than I thought and they handled it well.
Christopher Christenson
Christopher Christenson
1720037545
Seems like they decided my house would be a good one to let a trainee go at it. They damaged my siding on a simple job. I highly regret not going with another company. Not worth the cost.I paid the high cost to ensure the best service, but they screwed it up.
Mickey Olson
Mickey Olson
1720031959
Techs were great. Very informative and polite. Explained everything I needed to know. Thanks
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