HVAC Services

How to Cut Your AC Repair Cost

ac repairMany homeowners can troubleshoot a broken AC unit themselves before calling a technician. However, most AC Repair Encino are too complicated for DIY solutions and require expert technicians to complete them correctly. A basic service call fee costs between $75 and $200, with parts and labor tacked on to the total cost. The brand of the HVAC unit can also affect repair costs.

The type of AC unit you have determines what parts are needed to fix it. Central air units are usually more expensive to repair than ductless mini-splits, windows, and portable ACs.

The most common parts to break down or require replacement include air filters, thermostats, blower fans, compressors, evaporator coils, condensate drain lines, expansion valves, and circuit boards. The cost of replacing these can range from a few dollars to several hundred bucks, depending on the problem.

Dirty air filters often cause HVAC issues, such as low or inconsistent cooling. The cost to replace a filter is around $10 to $50. Clogged drain lines are another common repair. They can lead to moisture build-up, which damages the unit and leads to expensive repairs. The cost to clean a drain line is typically between $75 and $250.

The capacitor on your AC system energizes the motor and fan when the cooling cycle begins, but it can burn out. When this happens, the motor and fan won’t start. Replacing the capacitor costs an average of $100 to $500.

Other electrical components like capacitors, contactors, and relays can also wear out. They’re often more costly to repair than to replace, but the decision of which option is best will depend on the severity of the issue and whether the broken component can be salvaged.

A circuit board is the brain of an HVAC system. It controls many parts of the unit and can be a complex part to fix. Replacing a circuit board can cost up to $200, depending on the condition of the old one.

Evaporator coils are located inside the AC unit and are crucial to the cooling process. They can be damaged by corrosion or become plugged up with dirt and debris. A leaking evaporator coil is usually an indication of a bigger problem that will require a replacement. The cost to replace an evaporator coil is an average of $1,200.

A condensate drain line is an important component of any HVAC system. It prevents moisture from backing up into the unit, which can be damaging. The cost to clean or replace a condensate drain line is typically between $75 and $250.


When your home’s air conditioning stops working, you need professional help. HVAC technicians will charge a service call fee to assess the problem and determine what parts you need. Then, you’ll pay per hour for the contractor’s labor. This can add up fast if you need to repair multiple components or have the AC unit replaced altogether.

Keeping up with preventative maintenance can keep your HVAC system running at its best, which will lower your repair costs. However, some repair needs are out of the homeowner’s control and are unavoidable. For example, water leaks near the AC unit can cause expensive water damage and require a new drain line.

Some repairs involve specialized knowledge and tools that only a certified professional can complete. The more complicated the issue, the higher the repair cost will be. For example, a clogged condensate drain line can be cleaned out by the technician but might need to be replaced completely if it’s cracked or missing. Similarly, replacing the blower motor on an indoor air conditioner requires more extensive knowledge and tools than a regular fan motor, leading to a much higher repair bill.

Homeowners also need to consider the brand of their AC units when estimating repair costs. High-end brands are more durable and tend to have fewer problems, while low-cost models may need repairs more frequently.

If your a/c isn’t working, the first thing you should do is check the breaker box. Make sure the breaker is set to “on.” If it’s not, flip it on and schedule immediate HVAC care.

A faulty thermostat or loose wiring can also prevent your air conditioning from functioning correctly. When the service tech comes to your house, they’ll probably ask to see your thermostat and test it. This will help them confirm the issue is with the thermostat settings and not with a faulty or improperly connected wire.

A faulty drain pan or damaged compressor can lead to serious water leaks, which can cause costly damage and require replacement. This is why it’s essential to maintain the evaporator coil and condenser coil by cleaning them regularly and having them cleaned by a professional on an annual basis.

Emergency Fees

If your AC isn’t blowing cool air, it may be due to a clogged or frozen evaporator coil or air filter. If these aren’t the issue, a malfunctioning blower motor is likely to blame. In this case, a professional will need to replace or fix the blower motor.

A leaking AC unit is another clear sign that it’s time for repairs or replacement. This issue can be caused by a cracked drain pan or condensate line, a dirty air filter, low refrigerant, or a faulty compressor. Whether it’s an easy fix like replacing the drain pan or a more serious repair, such as recharging your system with more refrigerant, this issue should not be ignored as it can cause major damage to your home.

Regardless of what the issue is, a leaking air conditioner is a surefire way to overheat and burn out. In this case, it’s best to find a local AC repair service to diagnose the problem and perform any necessary repairs.

The cost of an AC repair or replacement depends on the type of unit and the specific issue at hand. Generally speaking, older units tend to have more problems and require more frequent maintenance. In contrast, high-end brands usually last longer and offer better warranties.

Homeowners can help to keep AC repair costs down by purchasing a service plan and scheduling routine maintenance during the winter or summer. This will keep the unit running properly and catch any potential issues before they worsen. Additionally, homeowners can save money by keeping debris away from the unit, especially dried grass and leaves.

Finally, the cost of an AC repair or replacement can also be affected by the size of the unit and how difficult it is to access. For example, a central AC unit typically requires a larger space and is harder to access than a window air conditioning unit or swamp cooler. This is why they often have higher repair and replacement costs than other types of cooling units. If the unit is located in a tight spot or hard-to-reach area, a professional will need to charge extra to access it.


A home warranty is another way to help cover AC repair costs without paying out-of-pocket. These plans typically include a repair service charge for the technician’s visit and an equipment replacement or labor warranty. However, the cost of the plan varies from one company to the next, and homeowners should carefully read the contract to see what coverage limits and exclusions apply.

When deciding whether or not to purchase a home warranty, it’s important to look at what the policy covers, how long the plan lasts, and any possible maintenance charges. Homeowners should also understand the process of filing a claim and how they might be reimbursed for repairs or replacements. A good home warranty company will have an extensive contractor network and will be easy to work with.

Getting an extended warranty for your HVAC equipment might seem like a waste of money, especially if it’s only 10 years old or less. But, it might save you from having to pay for major AC repair costs in the future and prevent you from putting repair expenses on a credit card, which can end up costing more in finance charges in the long run.

A warranty will also help you if you sell your home. If the original warranty isn’t transferable, the new owner might appreciate having a home warranty on an older system. Just make sure the warranty has a transfer clause and is affordable for the new homeowner.

Many home warranty companies also offer a free inspection when a home warranty is purchased. This is a great way for homeowners to learn about potential problems before they become expensive emergencies. The technicians will also be able to give homeowners advice on how to best avoid future problems.

The most important thing homeowners need to remember is that AC repair costs vary significantly from one location to the next. Similarly, the cost of repairing a unit will also be affected by the time of year. If the weather is cool in late fall, winter, or early spring, there may not be a lot of demand for air conditioning services, so HVAC repair costs won’t be as high. But once the temperatures start to rise, the AC repair costs can go up dramatically.