A top-to-bottom new installation of a central air heating system can easily top $20,000. Now that your attention is had, let’s examine how that number adds up and why most likely you won’t go anywhere near that unless buying a new home or doing a tear-down remodel.
Adding up Costs for Central Air Heating
The most obvious cost of all this is going to be the heating unit itself. Whether it’s gas, electric, oil, or heat pump – this is going to be the core of any costs you incur when installing central air heating. You can expect to pay, ballpark, between $2,000-$5,000 depending on the type of unit, name brand, and efficiency. For the units with top of the line efficiency ratings, expect to pay between $750-$1,500 more than a standard unit.
Depending on where you live, and what sort of utilities your house is connected to, will dictate which system you should choose. It is possible to convert to a new system utilizing a different utility, but that is going to drive up installation costs. In the North, North-East, Midwest, and Northwest, oil or gas are going to be the main furnace types, as the winters are too harsh for efficient use of a heat pump. For everywhere else, heat pumps (Or an HVAC system equipped with reversing valve) are fairly standard across the board.
After that, the next largest expense is going to be the installation itself. Labor costs, any required permits, and debris removal, are all going to go into the total for this. When getting a quote for installation, be sure to inquire about the necessity of a building permit and debris removal and if those costs are included in the quote. For a straight-forward installation the labor should all be done in one day and cost around $1,000. If there is any custom work or complex installation procedures, that will take more time and drive up the cost.
Which brings us to the last potential cost – the ductwork. Whenever possible utilize the existing ductwork. Ripping out the old and installing new ductwork is very labor intensive and therefore expensive.
In some states, counties, or cities, you can get a rebate or tax credit if your system meets certain efficiency ratings so be sure to ask your technician about those.
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