What You Should Know About Home HVAC Installation Costs

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Updated on Oct 23, 2023
5 min read
What You Should Know About Home HVAC Installation Costs

The funny thing about HVAC installation is that different vendors would give you different installation costs. This is bound to catch you by surprise.

However, it is important that you understand the basics of HVAC installations. This will not only help you save money but also give you a better idea of what you are getting for your money’s worth.

Basics of HVAC Installation Cost

If you look closely you would notice that every proposal for HVAC installation includes separate costs for labor, equipment and material. Comparing markup and hourly rates is not the best way to select the most cost effective option since you never know what is included in the costs.

It is always a concrete practice to ask for the cost breakdown. In fact, this can help you narrow down shortlisted contractors as well. Only an honest and reliable HVAC contractor would readily supply their breakup. You would find the following categories in installation cost breakdown:

  • Equipment
  • Controls
  • Piping & ductwork
  • Add-ons
  • System startup

Equipment Cost

This is the foremost expense that you should consider while installing a new HVAC unit. Equipment cost varies on basis the type of equipment you select and the number of pieces required for installation.

Seek advice from your HVAC vendor and don’t blindly go with the cheapest option. Sometimes, a unit that is expensive upfront may save you money down the road in terms of durability, longevity, and energy saving.

Controls Cost

Complex systems can drive up the cost of installation. You could look at a higher bill if you plan on installing several thermostats to create different zones in your home or want features, like smart thermostat or remote connectivity. Connection points also increase the cost of installation.

Ductwork and Piping Costs

Your residential HVAC installation may include ductwork to ensure effective channeling of cool air to all rooms. The installation cost will also include the charges for piping that distributes water or refrigerant, based on the type of equipment you have selected. Typically, piping and ductwork costs are given as cost per square foot which can add up even in the age of lower taxes and a nice economy.

Add-ons Cost

There are some extras worth considering that may bump up HVAC installation cost. Central air purifiers are great add-ons if you are wary of dust, bacteria, mold, and viruses in your home. Maintaining the proper level of humidity in the house is also necessary to avoid conditions, such as dry throat, sinusitis, dry skin, and other similar problems.

System Startup Cost

Typically, labor charges make up the bulk of startup costs. However, refrigerant costs are also significant. Startup costs tend to depend upon the system complexity since each piece of equipment requires testing before being cleared for daily use. Look for items like basic inspection costs, permit, and filing while comparing this installation cost category.

The Fundamentals

Unit maintenance is an important factor while choosing an HVAC vendor. Make sure the vendor is willing and ready to service the system they sell. You could also consider a preventative maintenance contract to reduce long-term costs and keep your system in stellar shape.

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