For most families, a new heating and cooling (HVAC) system is one of the larger investments you’ll make in your home. When people have to make this investment, they understandably want to know how much it will cost before making a decision.
We’ve seen too many people pay a full installation price for a basic changeout of equipment, because they were unable to compare apples to apples. Here’s our contribution to help you budget for this significant investment.
The HVAC contractors I’ve visited with are hesitant to give a firm price quote without seeing the system to be replaced, because there are so many variables that can play into the price of a new system installation. Most prefer to come out for a visit to the property to walk through the job site and see some of those variables.
We’re no different in this regard. We can’t place a firm price on a system installation without a thorough analysis of the existing system. We also want to have a serious conversation with the client to make sure they’ll be happy with both the new system and the installation. There are a ton of options out there, and it can be a lot to consider—especially if your system is broken and it’s very hot or cold outside!
Now, we’ll probably catch some grief from our peers about this next part, but this post isn’t for them. We want to be helpful and transparent, so I’ll point out some common variables and give you some reasonable ballpark numbers you could expect to pay a quality contractor in Edmond or Oklahoma City.
Think of your HVAC unit like a car. Just like with cars, you have some economical brands and models, then you have the luxury and sports car equivalents. They exist for a reason and clearly some consumers make the investment, but the investment with top-end equipment simply won’t be right for every client.
Five factors that can affect your investment in an HVAC system installation
- Project difficulty: This can cause a lot of price variation. If it’s difficult to access your attic or utility closet, that can add many hours of labor to the project, which will increase your investment.
- Unit size: Larger homes tend to have larger equipment (or multiple HVAC systems). A larger home will need an HVAC system or systems with larger capacity, which will be more expensive than a single lower-capacity unit.
- Equipment brand: Each manufacturer has its own pricing structure based on their processes, materials, and workers.
- Unit efficiency: More efficient equipment tends to be pricier up front but has lower operating costs. There is a point of diminishing returns when it comes to unit efficiency, so it’s something you’ll have to weigh the importance of for your family.
- Ductwork: This is another unknown factor that can cause a large variation in price. Many homes have an undersized duct system. Your duct system allows air to flow throughout your home, and if it’s insufficient for your heating and cooling needs, it will tax your HVAC system. Upgrading your ductwork can add between $1,000-3,000 to your investment.
Three main types of HVAC installations
- Changeout only: Existing HVAC equipment is removed and new equipment is installed to replace it.
- Changeout plus ductwork: This includes modifying or even replacing the existing duct system in addition to changing out the existing equipment.
- Full installation with additional features: In addition to receiving new equipment and ductwork, there are several other features you can add to your HVAC system. These include features to manage humidity and zoning duct systems to maximize home comfort.
Fair pricing for HVAC installations in OKC
- Changeout only: $6,500-9,000, one day to complete. This range captures most brands and sizes but leaves out some of the more expensive, highest-efficiency models. Changeout jobs only replace equipment, so any ductwork issues would still be present with the new equipment.
- Changeout plus ductwork: $9,500-13,000, two to three days to complete. This range depends on the type of equipment you choose and how much ductwork needs to be added or replaced. This is typically the better solution to address comfort concerns rather than simply replacing the equipment. Many companies in our market charge this price range just for the changeout without even looking at the duct system or asking whether it should be repaired or replaced as well.
- Full installation with additional features: $14,000-20,000, three to five days to complete. While we realize this price range is a large one, that is because of the many variables discussed above. A high-capacity system with top-end efficiency, new ductwork, and a zoning system could absolutely approach $20,000 in this market.
I hope this information is helpful to you for budgeting purposes. If you’ve already received a proposal from another company and aren’t comfortable moving forward with them, feel free to give us a call. We’d be happy to walk you through the process and make sure you know what you’ll be receiving for the price you are quoted.