How Much Does An AC Coil Cost?
Written By: Alexis Bennett
Edited by: Andrew Dunn
Are you wondering how much an AC coil costs? We can help.
In this cost guide, you will find answers to questions, like:
- What is an AC coil?
- How much does each coil type cost?
- What is the most affordable way to fix a malfunctioning AC coil?
- What is the average repair cost for HVAC coils?
- When do you need to replace your AC coil?
Knowing the cost of repairing or replacing major AC components can help you plan and save. Many air conditioner parts are costly, and the last thing you want is to be caught off guard by an unexpected repair bill.
What's In This Guide?
What Is An AC Coil?
AC coils are an essential component of your air conditioner. Your HVAC system uses a few coils during the air conditioning process. Indoors, your central air conditioner has an evaporator coil inside the air handler, and outside there is a condenser coil.
Both coils need to be in working condition for your system to run efficiently. However, if you are looking for information on how much an AC coil costs, you likely need pricing for the evaporator coil.
The evaporator coil contains a refrigerant that cools the air. As air is sucked into the unit by the air handler brushes across the coils’ surface and through its fins, the evaporator cools the refrigerant. As the freon cools, the gas turns into a liquid-vapor, then transfers to the compressor where it is heated and pressurized.
The compressor then transfers the hot gas to the condensing unit where air blowing over the condenser coils cools the gas, returning it to its liquid state.
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When Do You Need To Replace Central AC Coils?
Central air conditioners last between 10 to 15 years. The older your system is, the more likely you are to start experiencing system breakdowns.
The evaporator and condenser coils are pressured as the coils expand and contract over and over again for years. So, they are one of the more common AC components to break.
AC Evaporator Coil Life Expectancy
The length of time your evaporator coil will last depends on its quality and how well you maintain it. High-end devices last longer and typically have more extended warranties.
Even the best coils will only last for 15 to 20 years before they begin affecting your system’s efficiency.
Condenser Coil Life Expectancy
Condenser coils last between 10 to 20 years. However, like evaporator coils, the length of time your condenser coil will last depends on how well you care for it.
How Much Does It Cost To Replace Your AC System Coil?
The cost of replacing your AC coils will depend on the type of air conditioner you and if it has bottom or top of the line components. As the saying goes, “you get what you pay for,” entry-level products are less costly to purchase, but they do not last as long.
So, you can expect to replace them more often, and the warranties on lower-end components are typically only half as long. If your warranty has already expired, you need to start planning for a coil replacement.
Evaporator Coil Replacement Cost
Evaporator coils are not all made the same. So, the prices range pretty significantly. A high-end evaporator coil costs around $1,500, while a basic model can start at as low as $200.
Condenser Coil Replacement Cost
If your condenser coil needs to be replaced, you will want to replace the entire outside unit. The pricing for replacing your condenser coil is very similar to that of the evaporator coil. For a new condenser, the average cost is between $400 and $1,200.
Coil Installation Costs
HVAC technicians usually charge between $50 and $150 per hour, and the installation of a condenser or evaporator coil can be time-consuming and most jobs take all day. So, you can expect between $500 and $1,500 for labor costs on top of the coil.
Total Central AC Replacement Cost
When either of your coils is not functioning properly, it puts strain on the other. So, HVAC repair specialists suggest you change both.
Otherwise, you will have mismatched units which can cause your HVAC not to run as efficiently and put strain on the entire system. Replacing both will cost you between $1,700 and $11,000.
To learn more about AC coil replacement, check out this video:
How Do You Know When You Need To Replace A Coil?
Knowing when you need to replace an AC coil is challenging. However, you will start to see signs that one or more of your air conditioning system parts is not functioning as efficiently when you start receiving higher energy bills.
Which Are The Top AC Coil Manufacturers?
When you are investing in something as important as your home’s heating and cooling system, you want to buy from a trusted brand. If you are not in the air conditioning business, you probably do not know which manufacturers make the best coils.
So, here is a list of some of the brand names trusted by homeowners across the country:
- American Standard
We suggest using one of these top brands because they stand behind their work and have a track record of producing high-quality parts.
When Should You Schedule A Service Call For Your AC Unit?
If you have not had a system tune-up in more than six months, you should schedule an appointment with an HVAC professional. While they are there, they can check your coolant levels, blower, condensate drain line, thermostat, outdoor unit, and indoor coils.
The technician will tell you what maintenance they need to perform to keep your air conditioning units running well. When you schedule a maintenance call with an HVAC contractor the AC repair professional will:
- Check voltage levels, airflow, and key system temperatures.
- Change the air filters and if necessary remove buildup from coils.
- Test the heat pump.
- Check coolant levels.
- Repair refrigerant leaks and properly dispose of R-22 refrigerants.
- Check over all of your system’s pipes, valves, and motors.
- Clean buildup from the coils.
- Replace worn parts.
- Give you an overall system grade and estimated life expectancy.
Having an AC service company maintain your unit will increase the energy efficiency of your older HVAC system, and if you need a new coil, the technician will tell you. They can also give you an estimate for the total cost for a new AC.
How Can You Extend The Life Of Your New Coil?
Maintaining your coils is essential if you want to get the longest life out of them. However, it will also have an impact on your electricity bills.
Caring for your coils is not difficult if you have some DIY home repair experience and basic tools. This is what you need to do.
Change Your Air Filters – Air filters not only help to keep the air in your home safe, but they also keep dust particles and contaminants out of your AC unit. Without an air filter, your air conditioner would wear faster.
So, the single most beneficial thing you can do to keep your HVAC system running is changing your filters. For most homes, once every 30 to 60 days is appropriate.
There are times when you might need to change them more often though like if you have pets, if you smoke, or there are a lot of people living in your home.
Stay On Top Of Maintenance – Maintaining your HVAC is vital. Each of the parts depends on the others. If the evaporator coil is not working properly, it can put a strain on the condenser, compressor, blower, and other parts.
Low refrigerant levels can also damage the system, causing overheating which can damage the fragile coil fins and connections.
Keep Your Coils Clean – It is so important that both your indoor and outdoor air conditioner coils are clean and that they have the proper airflow. Outside leaves and debris that collect around the outside of your condenser are a concern as they restrict air.
Inside, dust and particles from the air in your home will quickly buildup on the evaporator coil if you have a filthy or missing filter. So, if you often forget to change your filters, you probably need to check your evaporator coil.
Staying on top of minor repairs will also help to prevent damage and extend the life of your coils.
Final Advice On AC Coil Replacement Costs
If your AC coils are due for replacement, a total system replacement will probably be necessary soon. With HVAC replacement costs ranging from $1,700 to more than $11,000, many homeowners invest in a home warranty plan.
A home warranty helps to cover the cost of repairs and system replacements for covered items up to the limit of your plan. That way, you don’t have to worry about how much it costs to replace an AC coil.