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Question DetailsAsked on 8/20/2017

I live at a condominium that provides central a/c. The unit at my apartment that distribute the cool has to be chan

evaporator coil and fan blower that distribute the cool air into the a/c ducks have to change the whole unit price??

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5 Answers


OK - sounds like you are talking about the remote air handler unit for a split central air unit - where the compressor and condensor coil and fan are outside or on the roof and serve the entire building, then refrigerant tubing runs to each apartment to provide the refrigerant which is expended in the evaporator coil in your air handler, which also has a fan to push the cooled air into the apartment - either from a wall-mounted unit blowing directly into the room like in some motel rooms (commonly called a mini-split) or into ducting for your apartment only (generally called a central split unit - whjich is what it sounds like you have).

Depending on what went bad in your unit and the availability of replacement coil/blower to fit your air handler, you might be able to just replace the blower unit (commonly around $500) or the evaporator coil (commonly $1000-2000) - or if old enough that compatible elements are not available, commonly around $1500-3000 depending on the air handler space constraints, amount of ducting mods needed to make a different model fit your system, accessibility, and of course cooling capacity. For a probably 2 ton or less unit (assuming your apartment is normal size and bearing in mind apartments generally takeless heating and cooling than houses because they have common walls with adjacent units with more stable temp than outside walls) I would expect a total air handler replacement to run in the ballpark $2000 range give or take $500 or so.

If this changeout is because they are replacing the central unit AND changing from R-22 Freon to R-410a or similar refrigerant, which chemistry and operating pressure would generally be incompatible with your air handler, then might run up to several hundred $ more to replace the tubing too - plus several hundred to sometimes $500-600 range more potentially to repair drywall and repaint where they have to open up walls or ceilings to run the new tubing.

Of course, I would read your apartment lease/purchase agreement to be sure you are responsible for this cost - sometimes (especially if you own the apartment) you are responsible for the in-apartment components, but sometimes if it is necessitated by replacement of the central unit then it becomes a common cost paid out of the howmowner's/condo association maintenance funds.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD


Thanks for your answer regarding my question about the a/c unit in my apartment, if I understood you correctly, a complite new unit of 2 ton (that what I have now) should cost about $ 2.500 (are there differences in the price regarding the made?) and for the whole job the they can charge (for their labor) $1.500-$2.000. They are asking from me $4.500 including a clean up of all the docks. I have 5 oppenings, and the docks are quite dirty from mold because the unit did not work properly. I will appreciate very much answers to this questions. Thanks Gabriel Wachs.

Answered 3 years ago by gabrielwachs


IF you have only an air handler - the actual compressed refrigerant gas comes from a building central air compressor as I previously described - then that sounds high to me and I would be looking for a couple more quotes from well-rated and reviewed Heating and A/C contractors, because that is right in the normal range for a good sized apartment or small house (say 1500-1800SF or under) complete A/C unit - outdoor compressor unit and all.

You might ask the building management to confirm which type of unit you have - complete compact A/C or air handler off as split unit only. Also if they know which residents have had their unit replaced recently, if they know who did it, if they know how much it cost - or talk to neighbors in the building who have had it done recently about those questions and how well they felt the job went.

BTW - here is an article on duct cleaning cost - typically at or less than $500 for a home, for normal sized apartment typically more in the few hundred $ range, so that wouldbump an air handler replacement job around $2000 over what one would normally expect to pay.

And remember - a bit of clarification on exactly WHY the entire unit has to be replaced, rather thann just blower or coil or whatever went bad, is still an open question - might get back to the vendor on that one.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD


Well, first allow me to thank you for the excellent system/service you have, it is a big help to me and probably to many other people. I did get all the answers I needed. For your information the units name is: Horizontal Fan Coil. Prices for 1.5-2 ton units are about $ 900

In my case they have to change the whole system with a new Thermostat and other electrical components, they charge me $ 4.500 for the whole work, in my case I through in also the cleaning of my docks, (2 bedrooms 2 bath r. living room & Kitchen all together 1.120 sqf) a work that is quite unpleasant becouse of the chmicals they have to use. (the demage in the ceiling I will have to fix by myself they refuse to include it in the price) I hope this information will help some other people in need. GW

Answered 3 years ago by gabrielwachs


Glad you are getting a handle on the situation - though for that price total (the air handler unit cost, including their markup, of around $1000 looks OK to me) I would still be getting another bid or two - unless access is nasty still looks high by 40-50% to me.

Good Luck, and many cool returns (pun intended).

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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