Should I Replace My AC Evaporator Coil or My AC Unit?

When you learn that the evaporator coil is damaged, you usually have two options. You can replace the evaporator or get a new AC unit. While replacing the evaporator coil sounds easier and much cheaper, it isn’t always the case. 


Can Replacing The Evaporator Coil Be A Problem?

If you replace the evaporator, you might end up with issues where the coil is mismatching the condenser. If the evaporator and the condenser mismatch in refrigerant, SEER or age, you will experience various problems. Such as high energy bills, less comfort, frequent and costly repairs, and a unit that will die much sooner than it should.  


When Would An Evaporator Coil Need To Be Replaced?

The evaporator coil is one of the most important pieces of your AC unit. It’s focused on absorbing the moisture and heat in your home. Simply put, you can’t cool your home without it. The coils are filled with a cold refrigerant that absorbs the warm air from inside your home and dumps it back outside. All while keeping only cool and fresh air inside your home. Pretty cool right?

When it comes to a failing evaporator coil, erosions are usually to blame. Over time, the refrigerant flowing through the coils wears down the inner lining, thus weakening the coils and leading to refrigerant leaks. In the long run, it’s more cost-effective to entirely replace the coil or AC unit instead of repairing the leak and refilling the AC unit with more refrigerant (especially R-22). 


When Would I Need To Replace My AC Unit?

If you’re experiencing problems with your coil and your unit is 8+ years old. It’s time to get a new AC unit. While air conditioners can last anywhere from 10 to 12 years, a unit nearing 8 years isn’t worth investing in a brand new coil. It’s like putting a brand new engine into a dying car. It just isn’t worth the money. 

Let’s say you did invest in a brand new coil for your old unit. The coil will have to pick up all the slack from it’s dying partner. Causing the coil to quickly disintegrate and die earlier than it should. Leading to your repeated options of replacing the coil or getting a new AC unit. 


Final Thoughts

If you decide to invest in a new AC unit to keep costs lower in the long run, keep in mind that every unit has a SEER rating (ranging from 13-21). The higher the SEER, the more efficient the unit and coil are. So when you’re looking for a new unit that won’t give you costly problems in a short period of time, go for a high SEER rating and a unit that uses R-410A refrigerant. Avoid any units that use refrigerant R-22. R-22 is an old refrigerant that’s harmful to the environment that’s no longer being produced; making it very expensive to replace the coil and recharge the unit. 


Want a professional Frontier tech to inspect your AC unit? Ask our experts.

We’ll send out a tech to take a look at your unit and give you several options that match your needs and budget.