Updated: 5/21/2024

One of the first questions we are asked when people are considering a central air system is “How long will it take to install a central air conditioning unit?” And while the answer is always a firm “it depends”, there are several factors we need to consider. In the interest of answering this question to everybody’s satisfaction, we’ll go over some of the factors that might impact the installation time.

Things that will affect the time it takes to install central AC in your Denver home

There are three main factors that will impact the length of time it takes to install your central air system:

The size of your home will affect the time it takes to install central air.
If your home is 10,000 square feet, it will likely take more time to install your AC system than if your home was 2,000 square feet. Larger homes often require more than one unit to cool the entire house efficiently, so logically it will take more time.

If you are installing a new central air system or replacing an old one.
If you are changing out an older AC unit for a newer or similar one, the job will generally take one day, or eight hours – as long as the other components, like the ductwork, remain the same. This is what we call a changeout.

On the other hand, if you are installing a brand-new system, your technicians will likely be installing everything—the ductwork, the thermostats, and so on. If your old unit was installed in the 1960s, for instance, it’s likely that the ductwork is asbestos, which will require a very careful removal to ensure your safety.

If we are replacing an old system, we will first have to do the changeout and then install new ductwork. This is the most extensive aspect of the job, and depending on the size of your house, could take up to three days or more.

The type, size, and location of your central air unit will impact the installation time.
Split units, packaged units, condensing units – depending on the type of central air you are installing and where it needs to go, it may take some extra time. For instance, if the location of your unit is in tight quarters, on the roof of a condo, or in the back corner of your basement, it will be significantly more complex than if it were to be in a readily accessible part of your garage. The harder we have to work, the more time it’s going to take.

Additional Considerations

Initial Assessment

Before installation, a technician will conduct an in-home estimate to determine the appropriate system size and any additional work required. This step helps in planning the installation process effectively.

Day of Installation

On the installation day, several steps are involved:

  • Preparation: Technicians lay down protective materials and prepare the site.
  • Old System Removal: This includes safely capturing refrigerant and removing old units.
  • New System Installation: Positioning the new unit, connecting line sets, and wiring.
  • System Testing: Charging the system with refrigerant and ensuring proper operation.

Post-Installation Best Practices

To maintain your new system, regularly change filters and schedule annual maintenance. This helps ensure efficiency and longevity.

So, as you can see, there are many variables at play here. On the plus side, if it’s a simple changeout or a straightforward installation in an average-sized home, you will likely be sitting in cool comfort within 24 hours. The larger the house, the more issues we have to deal with, the longer it will take. On this end of the scale, this could mean anywhere from two to four days.

Would you like to know how long it will take to install a new AC unit in your home?

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