How to Tell If Your Air Conditioning Unit is Getting Old

It’s hard to imagine now, but in a few months it’ll be even harder to imagine not using your AC. If you’ve ever had your AC unit break down during the summer, you know what an absolute hassle it is. That’s why spring is the perfect time to make sure your AC unit is ready for the heat.

A well-maintained AC unit can last quite awhile, but the most common cause of HVAC breakdown is age. When AC units get old, they can start having all sorts of little problems; the kind of “little” problems that snowball into not-so-little problems quickly. If your AC unit has any of the following symptoms, consider having it inspected before things start to heat up.


You can probably hear your AC running quietly when you listen closely, but you shouldn’t hear it turn on.

Your AC unit shouldn’t make a loud clanking or kicking noise when it’s running or when it turns on. Your AC unit may be improperly sized, or there could be an issue with the cooling coil. Noisy HVAC could happen for a lot of reasons, though, so don’t panic. Give us a call and we’ll be able to identify the source of the sound and fix it.


Air conditioners, along with the rest of the HVAC system, aren’t only responsible for heating and cooling. The HVAC system treats the air in your home. Part of its job is making sure your air is clean, not too dry or humid, and fresh.

If your home feels humid during the summer, your AC unit may be struggling to adequately pull moisture from the air during its cooling cycle. Your ducts themselves might leak, or some part of the AC unit may be installed incorrectly.

Near-Constant Running

How often your AC unit runs depends on multiple factors: thermostat setting, outdoor temperature and weather, dew point, your home’s location, sun exposure, etc. During really hot months, it’s not uncommon for an AC unit to start up and run fairly consistently all day.

If you feel like your AC unit never turns off, however, that may be a problem. There are multiple explanations as to why this could be happening: It could be an issue with duct sizing, or your thermostat may not be transmitting directions correctly. The AC unit could be dirty and inefficient as a result, or too small for the home. If you don’t think any of these explanations fit the problem, though, it could simply be that your AC unit is getting too old to efficiently cool your home.

Frequent AC Breakdowns

Old AC units contain old parts. Old parts wear out or break down. If you need to have your AC unit repaired once a summer or more, consider replacing it with a newer model, or ask a professional what your best option would be.

AC unit repairs can really add up, and if your AC unit is getting old, they may be mostly symptomatic. Consider how much money you spend on AC repair. Would it make more sense to replace the unit entirely? You won’t have to make repairs as frequently, and you may even save money in the long run.

Increased Energy Bills

If you have any of the other symptoms on this list, chances are you have this one too. When your AC unit can’t run as efficiently as it should, it’ll have to work harder to do its job. That means it’ll be on longer, it’ll run harder, and it’ll use more power. More power means higher bills. It’s normal for power bills to get a little more expensive in really hot periods of summer, but chances are you’ll be able to notice if there’s a substantial hike.

A lot of power companies will actually show you where your power is going on your bill. Check out how much power and money your AC unit is going through. If your AC uses too much energy or you feel like you aren’t getting what you pay for, it could be because your AC unit is too old to run efficiently.


This is the most important symptom of all. The whole point of having an AC unit is so that you’ll be comfortable at home during hot days. If your AC unit isn’t doing a good job of keeping you cool, if some rooms are too cold and other are too hot, or if you can’t hear yourself think over the sound of it running, give us a call. That’s what we’re here for.


You could ask! A quick AC servicing by the pros at Blue Ox can tell you everything you need to know. Learn how your AC unit is doing and what you can do about possible problems before they happen. If you have any other questions about your air conditioner, or your HVAC system more generally, check out our FAQ page. If you want to schedule an appointment, call or schedule online today! We’ll make sure you’re ready to enjoy that beautiful warm weather that must be coming, eventually.