Ultimate Guide: Cost of New Furnace and AC Installation – Key Tips for Choosing the Right HVAC Contractor

Factors Affecting the Cost of a New Furnace and AC

Establishing the price for a new furnace and AC system varies based on several key factors, each playing a vital role in the overall cost. Understanding these factors can help you anticipate and manage your budget effectively.

  • Type of System: The size, efficiency rating, and brand of the furnace and AC unit significantly impact the total cost.
  • Home Size and Layout: Larger homes may require higher capacity systems, affecting the pricing accordingly.
  • Ductwork Condition: Existing ductwork repairs or modifications can influence the installation expenses.
  • Energy Efficiency Ratings: Opting for high-efficiency models might have a higher initial cost but can lead to long-term savings.
  • Additional Features: Consider features like smart thermostats or zoning systems, which can add to the total cost.
  • Local Climate: Climate variations can impact the selection of the system and influence the installation expenses.
  • Installation Complexity: Factors such as accessibility, labor costs, and construction requirements can affect the overall installation cost.
  • Warranty and Maintenance Plans: Investing in extended warranties or maintenance packages can affect the upfront costs.

Keep these factors in mind as you explore your options for a new furnace and AC system installation. Each element plays a crucial role in determining the final price you pay.

Average Cost of Installing a New Furnace and AC

Installing a new furnace and AC system involves various costs that you should consider. The average cost in the US for both units ranges from $6,000 to $12,000. Factors such as system type and home size greatly influence the total expenses.

  • System Type: A basic system like a single-stage furnace and SEER 14 AC can cost around $3,000 to $7,000.
  • Home Size: Larger homes might require more powerful units, increasing costs to $10,000 or more.
  • Ductwork Condition: Repairing or installing new ductwork can add $1,000 to $5,000 to the overall installation cost.

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Remember, these are just average numbers. Your actual costs will depend on specific factors unique to your home and needs.

Upgrading to a High-Efficiency System

Making the switch to a high-efficiency system can significantly lower your energy bills. These systems are designed to maximize performance while reducing energy consumption, benefiting both your wallet and the environment. Here’s why you should consider this upgrade:

  • Energy Savings: High-efficiency systems can save you up to 20% on heating and cooling costs.
  • Environmentally Friendly: They consume less energy, leading to a reduced carbon footprint.
  • Increased Comfort: These systems provide more consistent temperatures and improved air quality.

When upgrading, look for systems with a SEER rating of 16 or higher for air conditioners and an AFUE of 90% or more for furnaces. The initial cost may be higher, but the long-term savings and benefits make it a worthwhile investment.

Remember, selecting the right system for your home is crucial. Consult with a professional HVAC technician to determine the most suitable high-efficiency system based on your specific needs and budget.

Energy Savings Up to 20% reduction in heating and cooling costs
Environmental Impact Decreased carbon footprint
Comfort Consistent temperatures and improved air quality
Recommended Ratings SEER 16+ for AC, AFUE 90%+ for furnaces

Additional Costs to Consider

When budgeting for a new furnace and AC, keep in mind that the average cost of installation can vary based on factors such as home size, system efficiency, and location. Apart from the base price for the units, here are some additional costs you should factor into your budget:

  • Ductwork Modifications: $1,000 – $5,000 depending on the extent of changes needed for optimal system performance.
  • Permit Fees: $100 – $400 to obtain the necessary permits for installation.
  • Thermostat Upgrades: Replace your old thermostat with a smart or programmable one for improved efficiency at around $200 – $500.
  • Air Quality Accessories: Consider adding air purifiers or humidifiers for better indoor air quality at an extra cost of $500 – $2,000.
  • Maintenance Plans: Annual maintenance agreements to keep your new system running smoothly cost approximately $150 – $500 per year.
  • Extended Warranties: Protect your investment with extended warranties that can range from $100 – $500 or more.

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It’s essential to obtain multiple quotes from reputable HVAC contractors to compare prices and services. Make sure to ask about any potential additional costs specific to your installation to avoid surprises in your final bill. Remember, investing in a high-efficiency HVAC system is not just about the upfront costs but also planning for these additional expenses that can arise during the installation process.

Choosing the Right HVAC Contractor

When selecting an HVAC contractor for your furnace and AC installation, there are key factors to consider to ensure the job is done correctly.

  • Experience Matters: Look for contractors with at least 3-5 years in the industry.
  • Licensed and Insured: Make sure they are properly licensed and carry insurance to protect you in case of accidents.
  • Customer Reviews and References: Check online reviews and ask for references to gauge their reputation.
  • Detailed Written Estimates: Obtain detailed written estimates from multiple contractors, not just verbal quotes.
  • Energy Efficiency Expertise: Find a contractor knowledgeable in high-efficiency systems to maximize your savings.
  • Warranty Coverage: Inquire about warranties on both the equipment and labor for added peace of mind.
  • Communication Skills: Opt for a contractor who communicates clearly and promptly throughout the process.


Choosing the right HVAC contractor for your furnace and AC installations is key to a successful upgrade. Factors such as experience, licensing, customer reviews, detailed estimates, energy efficiency expertise, and warranty coverage play a vital role. By prioritizing these considerations, you can ensure a smooth and efficient installation process. Remember, investing in a reputable contractor will not only enhance your home’s comfort but also save you money in the long run. Make informed decisions and enjoy the benefits of a well-installed HVAC system.

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Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why is it important to choose the right HVAC contractor for furnace and AC installations?

Choosing the right HVAC contractor ensures a successful and efficient system upgrade by guaranteeing experience, proper licensing, positive reviews, detailed estimates, energy efficiency expertise, warranty coverage, and effective communication.

2. What factors should I consider when selecting an HVAC contractor?

Factors to consider include the contractor’s 3-5 years of experience, valid licensing and insurance, positive customer reviews and references, proficiency in energy efficiency systems, detailed written estimates, warranty coverage for equipment and labor, and good communication skills.

3. How can I ensure a smooth HVAC installation process?

To ensure a smooth installation process, communicate effectively with your HVAC contractor, address any concerns promptly, follow the agreed-upon timeline, provide a clear workspace, and schedule regular maintenance visits after installation for optimal system performance.

Charlie Thomson is Appliance Mastery's expert on laundry appliances. With a degree in mechanical engineering and over 8 years of experience in the appliance repair industry, Charlie is a go-to resource for homeowners who want to tackle common issues with their washing machines, dryers, and dishwashers.

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