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How Much Does A Home Ac Compressor Replacement Cost?

Typical Range: $800 - $2,800

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Home AC Compressor Cost

The average home air conditioning compressor costs $1,200 to replace with a typical range anywhere from $800 to $2,800. Parts and labor each make up about 50% of the price. You’ll pay $400 to $1,600 for the parts alone. Labor runs $400 to $1,200 with most contractors billing $50 to $150 per hour. Warranties run anywhere from 5 to 12 years and usually only cover the price of parts after the first year or two.

A heat pump or AC compressor (they’re identical) does what it sounds like. It compresses the Freon in the line which forces it through the system so it can pick up and disperse heat in the evaporator and condenser coils.

Home AC Compressor Replacement Cost

Of the $900 to $1,600 average range for a compressor replacement, both materials and labor each make up 45% to 55% of your final bill. A few factors that play into the bill:

  1. If it’s hard to get to your outdoor unit, it’ll take more time to fix. More time means more money.
  2. You might notice a $100 to $200 difference in price from one brand to the next.
  3. Regional pricing. If you pay a high cost of living, chances are good that your contractor pays higher prices for their shop, gas and insurance. Those inflated prices get passed onto you.

With other added fees, which vary depending on your region, contractor and what’s exactly wrong with your system, you might consider a installing a new AC unit priced at $3,500 to $7,000

Average Labor Cost to Replace Residential AC Compressor

It’ll cost $400 to $1,200 in labor to replace an AC compressor. An HVAC professional charges anywhere from $50 to $150 per hour. Labor rates vary mostly by region. If you live somewhere with a higher cost of living, like San Francisco or New York, expect to pay more for the service.

Whole House vs. Mini Split AC Compressor Replacement Cost

You’ll pay about the same for each, or $400 to $1,600 for just the unit. Purchasing one yourself probably won’t save you any money since your pro can usually get it slightly cheaper. Plus, if you purchase it and it’s under warranty, you’ll likely have to deal with the paperwork.

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Residential Air Conditioner Compressor Cost by Size

Depending on the size of your unit, you’ll spend anywhere from $800 to $2,800 to replace a compressor, including labor. It’ll cost 2 to 3 times as much to replace a 5-ton AC Compressor as a 1 ton.

AC Compressor Price by Size
Size in TonsTotal Price
5$1,650-$2,750
4$1,500-$2,500
3.5$1,300-$2,200
3$1,200-$2,000
2.5$1,000-$1,700
2$900-$1500
1.5$800-$1,400

If you're installing a new unit, you'll need to know how large of one you'll need. It's always a good idea to get a quote from a pro, but to give you an idea, use these figures:

  • 1 ton is equal to 12,000 BTU's (British Thermal Units).
  • You'll need around 25 BTU's per square foot or around 1 ton per 500 square feet.
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Residential Air Conditioning Compressor Cost by Type

TypeMaterial Cost
Central Air$300-$1,600
Window Unit$100-$200
Mini Split$400-$1,800

Central Air vs. Window vs Mini-Split Compressor Cost

You’ll spend anywhere from $100 to $1,800 on a compressor. But it’ll vary quite a bit depending on the type of system you have. A few notes to consider as you compare prices:

  • Central AC and Mini Split systems function in much the same way, with a condenser unit outside that houses the unit. You’ll find a slight variation between the two, mostly dependent on brand.
  • For energy efficiency, you might consider upgrading your central unit to a mini split. However installing a new mini-split system costs $8,000 to $15,000 or more. They’re expensive to put in but cost far less to run. Plus, you’ll be able to control the temperature independently in every room.

Home Air Conditioner Compressor Cost by Brand

Lennox$450-$2,000
Rheem / Ruud$450-$1,400
Trane$300-$1,800
Carrier$400-$800
Goodman / Amana$250-$1,300
York Coleman$500-$1,000
LG$500-$1,500
Whirlpool$400-$1,200
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AC Compressor Repair Cost

Repair costs vary by part but tend to range in the $125 to $450 on average.General HVAC repairs cost $150 to $550. Some repairs might hit or exceed $1,000 at which point you might want to consider simply upgrading to a new unit.

Cost to Fix a Home’s AC Compressor
Circuit board$300$150-$650
Refrigerant lines$450$220-$660
Refrigerant leak detection & repair*$1,000$200-$1,700
Hard start kit$200$100-$300
Replacing capacitor$250$100-$410
Compressor leads & lugs$125$75-$200
Start capacitors$200$150-$500

*Consider just replacing the entire unit if you find a leak.

Residential AC Compressor Leak Repair Cost

Finding a leak might cost only $200 but repairing it might run $1,700 or more. If you have an older system that runs r22, consider upgrading to a newer r240a system. On top of repairing the leak, you’ll probably incur other charges such as freon refill costs of $150 to $350.

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DIY vs. Hiring an HVAC Professional

Because you must have a license to handle refrigerant, don’t attempt this repair yourself. Hire a professional to not only get the job done correctly, but they’ll usually guarantee their work. But be careful of scams. Hire an HVAC professional near you today from a list of prescreened, licensed and insured pros.

FAQs

How much does it cost to fix or replace a compressor in an air conditioner?

It’ll cost you anywhere from $800 to $2,800 to fix or replace your compressor, depending on the size of the unit and brand.

What does an AC compressor do?

An AC compressor compresses the refrigerant gas in the line to push it through the system.

How long do home air conditioner compressors last?

Compressors last the lifetime of the system, typically 10-20 years depending on the brand.

What are the symptoms of a bad AC compressor?

The two main symptoms of a bad compressor you’ll run into include the AC unit not cooling your home and not hearing the noisy unit turn on.

Can an AC compressor be repaired?

Parts of an AC compressor can get repaired by replacing things like the start capacitor, wires and circuitry.

Should I replace or repair my house AC compressor?

If it’s under warranty, replace it. If it’s not, repair it if it’ll be cheaper than replacing it.

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How do we get this data?

  1. Homeowners visit HomeAdvisor.com to find a top-rated pro to complete their home improvement project or repair.

  2. Once their projects are completed, the members log in to their accounts and complete a short cost survey.

  3. After compiling and organizing the data, we report it back to you.