The Lifespan of Ductwork: How Long Do They Last?

Learn about the average lifespan of ductwork and other essential components of HVAC systems from an expert's perspective. Find out how long they typically last and why regular maintenance is crucial for their longevity.

The Lifespan of Ductwork: How Long Do They Last?

As an expert in the field of HVAC systems, I have been asked countless times about the lifespan of ductwork. It's a valid concern for homeowners, as ducts play a crucial role in maintaining a comfortable temperature in the home. After years of experience and research, I can confidently say that ducts typically last between 10 to 15 years in most homes. However, it's important to note that once ducts reach the 15-year mark, they should be replaced to avoid potential problems such as pests, voids, and drafts.

These issues can greatly impact the temperature and air quality in your home, making it uncomfortable for you and your family. Replacing old ducts not only prevents these problems but also ensures that every part of your home is comfortable. While it may seem like an expensive investment, it's worth it in the long run as more expensive items tend to last much longer.

How Long Do Air Conditioners Last?

Air conditioners are another essential component of a comfortable home.

On average, central air units will last between 12 to 17 years with proper use and maintenance. However, they tend to fail before other components that produce heat due to moisture passing through the system and causing corrosion. The chemicals used in the system to cool and dehumidify the air, as well as those that pass through from building materials, can be corrosive to the copper elements in the condenser. This can lead to erosion and decay, ultimately causing the unit to break down.

The size of the unit does not affect its lifespan unless it is not suitable for your home's size. For example, if you have a small 1.5-ton air conditioner trying to cool a house that actually needs a 5-ton unit, it will break down much faster from overuse. In this case, investing in a properly sized (albeit more expensive) unit is a wise choice. On average, an air conditioning system can last between 10 and 25 years, depending on several factors such as usage and maintenance.

It's essential to keep up with regular maintenance to ensure the longevity of your unit.

The Lifespan of Commercial HVAC Systems

Commercial HVAC systems are larger and more complex than residential systems, but they also have a longer lifespan. With proper maintenance, the average life expectancy of commercial HVAC systems is between 15 to 20 years. However, just like our bodies, our HVAC systems need regular care to function efficiently.

If we neglect to exercise, eat well, and get enough sleep, our bodies will wear out faster. Similarly, if we don't keep up with service and repairs for our commercial HVAC systems, they will also wear out more quickly.

Danny Towne
Danny Towne

Amateur coffee guru. Devoted twitter advocate. Award-winning tea expert. Amateur internet scholar. Subtly charming pop culture junkie.

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