Your business sense might suggest waiting until spring since that is when the new system will be needed. But making a decision during the off-season for air conditioner replacement can help you make better decisions and help you save money. Here are a few reasons you should consider your Commercial HVAC System upgrade options during autumn.
As a business owner, if your reflections about this past summer include memories of air conditioner trouble and repairs, a good time to consider upgrades is the fall of the year.
Time to Assess Your Situation
The cooling season comes early in the spring; if you put the decision off until spring, you will likely wait until the next problem arises. Opening a hot workspace to staff creates a lot of stress and no one enjoys making decisions under duress. Give yourself some time to make better decisions and evaluate your present system.
How old is the system? If you don’t remember when I was installed, do some research. Commercial air conditioning systems last between 15 and 20 years—a little longer if well-maintained.
Compile the list of repairs over the last few years. Are the repairs minor or major? How frequently do the repairs come?
Determine the expected end of life for your current system (it may be overdue). This can help you make your decision.
Time to Research
If you determine your air conditioner needs to be replaced, making a decision during the autumn allows time to explore available products, new technologies, and system options. Don’t make the mistake of blindly replacing your system with the same size and type currently installed. Since you have the time, have a new load calculation completed. This will incorporate any remodeling or expansion since your last system was installed. It can also correct problems with oversized or undersized systems; installation practices in past decades tended to size systems up to ensure capacity rather than size accurately.
The decisions you make today will impact your facility for the next 15+ years, so give yourself enough time to explore and prepare.
Time to Negotiate
If you must replace your whole air conditioning system with 1000 temperatures outside, your options are limited and you tend to take what is available immediately. That is no way to approach important capital decisions—if you can help it. Exploring and planning in the fall allows you to shop around for prices and negotiate if needed.
As a business owner, you know that demand drives price: air conditioner prices during the off-season will be lower than at the beginning of the new cooling season. Labor for installation will be more available than during the heat of the summer. Technicians will have more availability, so you should not need to wait for installation.
Each year, manufacturers roll out new models at new model prices. Meanwhile, local installation and service providers will be ready to move last year’s model to make way for the new. This is the time to negotiate for a new system.
While you are exploring new technologies and new systems, take a look at Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) systems. This technology has great potential for commercial office spaces. With VRF technology, spaces can be zoned for comfort; a conference room with a dozen people can be served differently than an office for a single worker.
VRF systems operate continuously with lower blower speeds. The result is a very quiet operation. Lower blower speed uses less energy, saves money, and reduces your carbon footprint. Thermostat controls are exceptional and can be accessed from a Smartphone app.
If you need to talk about commercial air conditioning this fall, give Northwind a call.