Twenty years ago, many Pacific Northwest natives thought of air conditioning as a luxury. In recent years, though, the summers have been getting hotter and hotter, and AC has gone from a nice-to-have to a near necessity. In fact, we’ve seen a huge uptick in AC installs over the past few years.

Are you thinking of installing air conditioning in your home for this coming summer? It’s spring, which is a perfect time to start thinking about this investment.

When it comes to installing new or replacing old AC systems, one of the first questions we get is: How much is it going to cost? Let’s explore!

Cost Depends on a Variety of Factors

The cost of installing home air conditioning depends on a variety of different factors, including:

#1 Square Footage

The cost of installing an AC system depends greatly on the size of your home. For larger spaces, you’ll need a more robust and customized system. However, thanks to the advancement of technology, it’s easy to keep even the largest of homes cool and comfortable—from basements to top-story bedrooms.

#2 Desired Level of Comfort

Do you want to be able to cool your entire home? Or, are you more concerned about specific spaces within your home? Will you keep the AC on 50% of the time or 100% of the time during the hot months? The cost of the install will depend on both square footage and desired level of comfort.

#3 Home Efficiency

If you have great insulation, few west-facing windows, and adequate tree coverage, your home likely keeps more naturally cool during the hotter months. However, if you have a lot of natural light and poor insulation, you’re going to need a more robust system to keep cool and comfortable.

#4 Desired Efficiency

What’s your preferred level of efficiency? Depending on where you live, there may be specific efficiency requirements. In Portland, for example, the government requires us to sell equipment that is 13 SEER of higher.

Efficient systems may be more expensive upfront, but they lower monthly utility bills and overall utility costs.

#5 Noise Requirements and Sensitivity

Are you sensitive to humming and buzzing? Or, does your HOA have noise requirements? If you are noise sensitive or if your HOA has these types of requirements, you’ll want to consider a quieter model. Thankfully, thanks to new technology, we have lots of quiet options available!

#6 Type of System

The cost may depend on the type of AC system you choose. There are many different types of systems to choose from, from central AC to heat pump to ductless. There are pros and cons to each. When you speak with one of our consultants, we can customize a solution that works best for your particular home, needs, and preferences.

#7 New or Replacement System

Are you installing AC for the first time? Or, are you replacing an outdated system? When you are replacing an outdated or inefficient system, the price is generally lower than first-time installs.

Specific Estimates

Considering all the different variables, the cost of installing air conditioning varies.

Central AC units start around $4500 and usually run to about $8500.

For ductless sytems, the prices start around $5000 and can go up from there. While ductless is more expensive than Central AC, it has countless benefits, as outlined on our blog about the pros of ductless systems. One of our favorite benefits is zoning, which allows you to control which zones of your home to keep cool.

Benefits of Air Conditioning

With all the advances in technology in recent years, we’re seeing many benefits to air conditioning. AC has increasingly become more efficient and powerful. Additionally, with the use of zoning, where you only cool certain parts of your home, you can minimize your environmental (and economic) footprint by only cooling the parts of your home that need it the most.

In addition to increased comfortability, air conditioning systems can also be a good choice to protect yourself from environmental pollutants. We’re seeing a huge upsurge in summer forest fires, which has been impacting the outdoor air quality. In the summer months, with AC, you won’t need to open windows to keep your spaces cool. You can improve your indoor air quality by only bringing in conditioned, filtered air.

We’re Here to Help

At Jacobs, we carry the best quality equipment and systems from the leading brand Carrier®, who actually invented air conditioning! You can explore our wide-ranging selection here.

At Jacobs, we’re always here to provide our clientele very accurate, fair estimates about new installs or system updates. If you’re interested in getting a specific quote, we’d love to help. Just reach out to us at any time and we can get the conversation started.