How to Budget for a New AC Unit and Furnace: Tips to Save Money and Make Smart Choices

Are you tired of sweating through scorching summers and shivering in the winter chill? Picture this: your trusty AC unit wheezing its last breaths, and your furnace on the fritz. Sounds like it’s time for a new AC unit and furnace. But how much will it cost you?

Factors that impact the cost of a new AC unit and furnace

When considering the cost of a new AC unit and furnace, several factors come into play. Understanding these key elements will help you anticipate the investment required for these essential home appliances.

  • Size of Your Home: Larger homes often require more powerful HVAC systems, leading to higher costs for both the AC unit and furnace.
  • Energy Efficiency Ratings: Opting for units with high Energy Star ratings might initially cost more but can result in long-term savings on energy bills.
  • Type of System: Different types of AC units and furnaces, such as split systems, packaged units, or variable speed systems, come at varying price points.
  • Installation Complexity: If your home requires extensive ductwork or modifications for installation, this can impact the overall cost.
  • Additional Features: Features like smart thermostats, zoning systems, or advanced filtration can increase the cost but offer enhanced comfort and efficiency.
  • Local Climate: Climate considerations, such as extreme heat or cold, may influence the type of AC unit and furnace needed, affecting the total cost.
  • Labor Costs: Installation expenses can vary based on the complexity of the project and the rates charged by HVAC professionals in your area.

By weighing these factors and consulting with HVAC experts, you can get a clearer picture of the cost involved in purchasing a new AC unit and furnace for your home.

Remember, choosing quality systems that meet your specific needs can lead to greater comfort, energy savings, and long-term satisfaction.

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Average cost of a new AC unit and furnace

Considering the average cost of a new AC unit and furnace, you can expect to invest between $5,000 and $10,000. This cost can vary based on factors like the size of your home, the type and efficiency of the systems chosen, and additional features.

Here’s a breakdown of potential costs associated with getting a new AC unit and furnace:

  • AC Unit:

  • Central AC: $3,000 – $7,000
  • Ductless Mini-Split: $2,000 – $5,000
  • Furnace:

  • Gas Furnace: $2,500 – $7,500
  • Electric Furnace: $1,500 – $2,500
  • Installation Costs:

  • Labor charges: $1,000 – $3,000

To get a more accurate estimate for your specific needs, it’s advisable to consult with HVAC professionals. They can assess your home, recommend suitable systems, and provide detailed cost breakdowns.

Keep in mind that investing in energy-efficient systems may have a higher upfront cost but can lead to long-term savings on energy bills. Moreover, maintaining your units regularly can extend their lifespan and prevent costly repairs down the line.

By understanding the average costs involved and considering factors that impact pricing, you can make informed decisions when investing in new AC and furnace systems.

Different types of AC units and furnaces to consider

When it comes to AC units and furnaces, there are various types to consider for your home. Here are some key options:

  • Central Air Conditioning: Efficiently cools the entire house and is typically paired with a furnace for dual functionality.
  • Ductless Mini-Split Systems: Ideal for homes without ductwork, offering flexibility in zoning and energy efficiency.
  • Heat Pumps: Provide both cooling in the summer and heating in the winter, offering year-round comfort.
  • Gas Furnaces: Common for colder climates, these use natural gas to heat the home efficiently.
  • Electric Furnaces: Suitable for areas with lower heating requirements, utilizing electricity for warmth.

Consider the size of your home, your climate, and energy preferences when selecting the right AC unit and furnace. Consulting with HVAC professionals can provide tailored recommendations based on your specific needs.

Additional expenses to keep in mind

When budgeting for a new AC unit and furnace, it’s vital to consider installation costs. These can vary based on the complexity of the job and any additional work needed to integrate the new systems with your home’s existing infrastructure.

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Permit fees are often required for HVAC installations. These costs can differ depending on your location and the type of system being installed, so it’s essential to factor them into your budget from the outset.

Don’t forget about maintenance expenses. Regular servicing and upkeep are crucial for ensuring your AC unit and furnace operate efficiently and have an extended lifespan.

In some cases, you may also need to upgrade your electrical panel to accommodate the electrical requirements of a new system. This can add to the overall cost of the installation but is necessary for safety and optimal performance.

If you’re considering a smart thermostat to complement your new HVAC system, remember to include the cost of the device in your calculations. While it’s an optional expense, a smart thermostat can help improve energy efficiency and comfort in your home.

Planning for these additional expenses upfront will help you avoid unexpected financial burdens and ensure a smooth and successful installation process.

Tips for saving money on your new AC unit and furnace purchase

If you’re looking to save some money on your new AC unit and furnace purchase, you’re in the right place. Here are some practical tips to help you make a smart investment:

  • Compare Multiple Quotes: Get estimates from at least three different contractors to ensure you’re getting a fair price.
  • Energy Efficiency: Opt for energy-efficient models that may cost more upfront but can save you money in the long run on energy bills.
  • Seasonal Promotions: Keep an eye out for seasonal sales or manufacturer rebates that could lower the cost.
  • Regular Maintenance: Stay on top of routine maintenance to prolong the lifespan of your units and avoid costly repairs.
  • Proper Sizing: Make sure your new AC unit and furnace are appropriately sized for your home to prevent energy waste.
  • DIY Installation?: Consider performing basic installation tasks yourself to cut down on labor costs, if you’re handy.

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Saving money on your new HVAC system is not only about finding the lowest price but also about making smart choices that will benefit you in the long term.


When it comes to investing in a new AC unit and furnace, remember to consider all the costs involved. By comparing quotes, choosing energy-efficient models, and staying proactive with maintenance, you can save money in the long run. Don’t just focus on the initial price; think about the benefits of making wise decisions for your home comfort and energy efficiency. Keep these tips in mind as you navigate the process of purchasing and installing your new HVAC system. Happy savings and a cozy home await!

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why is it important to factor in additional expenses when budgeting for a new AC unit and furnace?

When budgeting for a new AC unit and furnace, it’s crucial to factor in additional expenses like installation costs, maintenance, energy consumption, and possible repairs. Ignoring these costs can lead to budget overruns and unexpected financial stress.

2. How can I save money on purchasing a new AC unit and furnace?

To save money when buying a new AC unit and furnace, consider comparing multiple quotes, opting for energy-efficient models, taking advantage of seasonal promotions, proper sizing, staying on top of maintenance, and considering DIY installation for basic tasks.

3. What should I focus on besides finding the lowest price?

Apart from finding the lowest price, it’s essential to make smart choices for long-term benefits. This includes prioritizing energy efficiency, reliability, manufacturer warranties, professional installation where necessary, and investing in regular maintenance to prolong the lifespan of your AC unit and furnace.

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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