How To Look At A House
McGarry and Madsen's home inspection blog for buyers of
site-built, mobile/manufactured and modular homes
What is the average life expectancy of a heat pump?
Saturday, June 1, 2019
How long does a heat pump last?
While not an exact predictor, average lifespan is still a valuable piece of information. Here’s the average lifespan for different types of air conditioners:
- Split System Heat Pump Condenser (outside unit) - 10 to 16 years
- Split System Heat Pump Air Handler (inside unit) - 14 to 18 years
- Ductless (Mini-Split) Heat Pump - 10 to 16 years
- Package Units Heat Pump- 10 to 16 years
- Heat Pump Window Unit - 5 to 8 years
Although the condenser (outside unit) of a split system tends to have a shorter life than the air handler, because a replacement condenser must now be matched for performance (by the manufacturer or certified by an engineer) with the indoor evaporator coil portion of the air handler, the evaporator coil unit may have to also be replaced when the condenser fails.
Regular maintenance is a good way to beat the odds and make your heat pump system last longer, and most HVAC contractors offer a service plan with annual or twice a year visits.
Many people refer to both an air conditioner ("straight cool” or “cooling”) and a heat pump as simply an “air conditioner,” but an air conditioner requires an electric resistance heat coil or combination with a gas or oil furnace for heating, whereas a heat pump can reverse the flow of refrigerant to heat the home. Most heat pumps have electric resistance heat anyway as a backup for very cold days.
Here’s our comparison chart with the average life expectancies of different types of air conditioners, along with other appliances that provide heating and ventialation for a home.
Also see our article How can I make my Florida air conditioner last longer?
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Field Guide for Home Inspectors, a quick reference for finding the age of 154 brands of HVAC systems, water heaters, and electrical panels, plus 210 code standards for site-built and manufactured homes, and the life expectancy rating of 195 home components. Available at amazon.com for $19.95.
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
To learn more about heating and air conditioning systems, see these other blog posts:
NOTE: These life expectancies are based on data provided by InterNACHI, NAHB, FannieMade, and our own professional experience. Because of the numerous variables that can affect a lifespan, they should be used as rough guidelines only, and not relied upon as a warranty or guarantee of future performance.
of Blog Posts
Top 5 results given instantly.
Click on magnifying glass
for all search results.
Buying a home in North/Central Florida? for a team inspection by two FL-licensed contractors and inspectors. Over 8,500 inspections completed in 20+ years. In a hurry? We will get it done for you.