Welcome to our price comparison website for residential central air conditioner systems. The information we display on this site is updated weekly with pricing we compile from industry information, consumer submissions, and data gathered from readers and contractors across the web who have chosen to share it. The price range to have central air installed can vary widely by location, your home and many other factors. This page is meant to be your online price guide and help you get started in understanding those costs.
*Note: This site is for informational purposes to help homeowners. You should always consult a local central air conditioner company or HVAC professional to have your needs assessed for more accurate pricing.
Central AC Prices by Brand
For the purpose of this price comparison table of leading consumer brands, we used a baseline of a standard efficiency 2.5 ton central ac unit and matching evaporator coil, from the different leading brands below. A 2.5 ton unit is the approximate size installed in most 1400-1800 square foot homes. All central ac unit prices online are approximate.
Central AC Unit & Evaporator Coil Brand
AC & Coil Installed
|Average Cost of Name Brand AC & Coil||$1,245||$2,410|
Average AC Unit Prices by Size or Capacity
Central AC units are manufactured in very specific sizes ranging from 1.5 – 5 tons of cooling capacity. An HVAC contractor can perform a load calculation on your home to tell you the exact size for your house. Many states now require a load calculation for both new and replacement central air systems, to have the system permit and inspection completed. If the AC Contractor does not pull a load calculation, use a different contractor! (free quotes)
Central AC Unit Size
AC & Coil
AC & Coil Installed
|1.5 Tons, 18,000 btu||$710|
|2 Tons, 24,000 btu||$1,090|
|2.5 Tons, 30,000 btu||$1,215|
|3 Tons, 36,000 btu||$1,340|
|3.5 Tons, 42,000 btu||$1,490|
|4 Tons, 48,000 btu||$1,560||$3,040|
|5 Tons, 60,000 btu||$1,640||$3,198|
Central AC Prices by Efficiency
High efficiency central air systems can save you a considerable amount of money on energy. Gone are the days of 7-10 seer home ac units, and the lowest efficiency central air conditioner units you can purchase from a manufacturer is 13 seer. The highest efficiency central ac units are rated at 24 seer, and other brands use solar panels to assist in providing electricity during peak use. Of course, the prices with higher seer ratings are much more than their lower initial cost counterparts.
SEER – Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (Higher is better, like mpg in a car)
For the purpose of this SEER Efficiency Comparison, we chose a 2.5 ton central air conditioner unit and matching evaporator coil. Manufacturers recommend you only install matched systems to achieve the ARI ratings listed.
Central Air Efficiency Ratings
AC & Coil
AC & Coil Installed
|13-14 SEER (Standard Efficiency)||$1,215|
|15-16 SEER (High Efficiency)||$1,640|
|17-18 SEER (High Efficiency)||$1,960|
|19-21 SEER (Super High Efficiency)||$2,490|
|22-24 SEER (Highest Available Efficiency)||$2,980|
Note: Some of the higher SEER central air conditioners (18-24 SEER) may require the addition of a solar panel to your roof, to assist in providing renewable green electricity to power the ac during peak use.
Central AC Repair Costs, Parts, Time and Installation
The following section of the site contains common repair costs for central air conditioners. We include the price of the parts, the estimated repair time and the cost for part installation. (Time to install measured in hours)
|Troubleshooting Service Call *||-||1-2 hours|
|Hourly Street Rate **||-||-||$65-$120|
|Replace Circuit Breaker||$15-$45||1 hr|
|Replacement AC Contactor||$15-$45||1||$90-$200|
|Air Conditioner Capacitor||$15-$35||1||$90-$200|
|Air Conditioner Circuit Board ***||$30-$450||1||$120-$550|
|Repair Copper Lineset||-||1-3|
|Replace Copper Lineset (30 foot insulated)||$135-$300||2-4||$340-$600|
|Evaporator Coil Replacement Cost||$200-$500||2-4|
|TXV or Refrigerant Meter||$25-$60||1-2||$140-$220|
|Evaporator Drain Pan||$10-$40||1-2||$90-$200|
|Condensate Drain Line||$15-$30||1-2||$90-$180|
|Replace Condensate Pump||$25-$60||1 hour||$90-$140|
|Compressor Hard Start Kit||$30-$60||1||$90-$180|
|Outdoor Coil Replacement****||$150-$400||2-4||$400-$1200|
|Condensing Unit Fan Motor||$30-$180||1-2||$90-$300|
|Refrigerant Leak Detection *****||$15-$25||1-3 hours||$120-$200|
|R22 Refrigerant Recharge (3 pounds)||$70||1 hour||$190-$310|
|R410 Refrigerant Charge (3 pounds)||$20||1 hour||$80-$120|
* AC Service call fees may be waived under special agreements.
** The hourly street rate for central air conditioner repair cost is the per-hour rate a contractor charges for repairs that do not involve parts. In most cases, these rates are already factored into the total cost of the repair and are not charged separately. The rate is a computed value based on time, general materials, and company overhead like the office, phones, gas, etc.
*** There are an endless number of manufacturer specific oem circuit boards for central air conditioners. The cost of the parts varies widely.
***** Finding leaks in a central air conditioner system is not an easy task. Companies will use dye packs or other tools like sniffers to locate leaks, but it can take several hours on systems with concealed parts.
User Submitted, Installed Prices
In the section below, we maintain our list of user submitted prices for their homes central air conditioner replacement cost. If you would like to share a price range that you were quoted, or paid for your home system, please go to the user submission form and send it in.
Each of the estimated prices you see below are based on the home, the homeowner needs and much more. Trane goes out of it’s own way to help homeowners understand there are many variables in pricing when you buy an AC unit for your home. The only way to know the exact cost for your home is to have a trained professional provide a detailed quote. Click here to get a free quote today.
AC Size & Brand
|Port Jefferson, NY||1880sf||3-ton Carrier||Full AC Replacement, Installed|
|Notes: Replaced the central ac and inside coil on our 20 year old system. It took 2 works 4-5 hours. We put in a 15 seer carrier.|
|Tulsa, OK||1300sf||2-ton Goodman||AC, Electric Furnace, Installed|
|Notes: We heard not to install Goodman, but it was our cheapest ac option. Took 2 guys about 6 hours to get it installed.|
|Mt Airy, NC||1190sf||2-ton Fedders||Central Air and Coil, Installed|
|Notes: Central air conditioner broke 2 weeks ago and we had our appliance repair guy put in a new outside box and coil in the furnace. 1 installer, 3 hours.|
|Greenville, SC||1750sf||3-ton Trane||AC, Air Handler, Installed|
|Notes: 8 year old home and the coil and pa were completely rusted out of our old central air conditioner. We decided to replace the whole unit with a Trane central ac and air handler. Took 2 guys a full day.|
|Arlington, TX||3320sf||3-ton Bryant||Central Air Conditioner, Air handler, Installed|
|Notes: This was the second of 2 units in our (21 year old) home to fail. We chose this 2-stage central air conditioner since the salesman said it would work better and cut our electricity costs. Took a crew of 3 workers 5 hours to complete the installation for us.|
|Phoenix, AZ||1500sf||2.5-ton Trane||AC with Air Handler, Installed|
|Notes: Replaced our 13 year old Carrier air conditioner with a new 15 SEER Trane AC & Air handler with Electric Heat Strips. Took a crew of 2 guys a full day to get it done. House is awesome cool now, but the new Trane central ac is huge in size!|
|Lexington, KY||1310sf||2.5ton Goodman||Central Air, Gas Furnace, Installed|
|Notes: Replaced an 18 year old Coleman system with a new Goodman GSC13 seer system. The new central air and furnace seems to work perfectly for our home, this winter will tell I guess. It took 2 crewman, 6-7 hours to install the new ac & furnace.|
|Zephyr Hills, Fl||1760 sf||3-ton Heil||AC & Air Handler, Installed|
|Notes: Our central air conditioner failed on Thursday, the crew had the new one installed by midday Friday, and since they were slow, we got a heck of a bargain on a 14 seer system!|
|Charlotte, NC||1820sf||3-ton Carrier||Central AC Unit & Coil, Furnace, Installed|
|Notes: We needed a new central air unit and replaced the furnace at the same time. The company was hungry for work and discount $1k off the price for signing contract that day! A crew of two installers and a helper (3 total) showed up the following morning and had the job done in 6 hours.|
|Vacaville, CA||990sf||2-ton Carrier||Packaged AC Unit|
|Notes: Platform packaged system, installed by a crew of two workers with a small boom truck.|
|Galveston, TX||2350sf||4-ton Goodman||Central Air Unit, Coil, Air Handler|
|Notes: Typical short life of a central air unit in Galveston, the outdoor unit was corroded by the salt air and only lasted about 8 years this time. 2 workers handled the job and we were very pleased with the installation cost, it was lower than last time.|
|Albany, GA||1210sf||2 Ton Trane||Heat Pump, Fan Coil|
|Notes: Replaced an old AC and electric heat air handler. The 2 ton heat pump price was much more competitive than we thought it would be, so we chose a heat pump versus straight ac this time. Took 2 guys about 6 hours to get the installation done.|
|Shreveport, LA||1110sf||2-ton Fedders||AC Condenser, Installed|
|Notes: The outside part broke the compressor. Had several guys want to replace the whole thing in and out, but since it was only 7 years old, the ac condenser cost only much cheaper than the entire system price. Took 1 guy about 3 hours.|
|Sarasota, FL||2995sf||5 Ton Lennox||Central AC Unit, Electric Heat|
|Notes: It took a crew of three workers 1.5 days to complete the installation of a new Lennox central ac unit with an electric heat air handler. We also had an electronic air cleaner, several ducts replaced, and UV lights installed at the same time.|
|Miami, FL||1960sf||3.5-ton Bryant||Air Conditioning Unit|
|Notes: Our old central ac quit. We called around for air conditioning units prices and were shocked how much some of these companies wanted. They apparently don’t know there is a recession going on! We finally got a crew to install the ac and air handler on Weds.|
|Decatur, GA||1700sf||2.5 Ton Trane||Central Air Heat Pump System|
|Notes: 12 year old heat pump central hvac stopped working. Repair was $1400 for compressor, recharge and whatever else they said. Replacement with a 15 seer higher efficiency system was under 4 grand. No brainer for us. Technician diagnosed the issue, 2 installers had it done the next day in 6 hours.|
|St Louis, MO||2800sf||3 Ton Carrier||AC, Coil, Installed|
|Notes: Cost of $3560 was quoted cost. I can’t believe how much everybody is paying for their units, where do they come up with the money? We make good money but we cannot validate paying that much for a new unit, that is CRAZY! we had a friend come out and he said $1500 for everything.|
|Boston, MA||2150sf||4-Ton Trane||AC & Coil, Installation|
|Notes: Original AC unit was installed in 1997, decided to replace when compressor failed.|
|Phoenix, AZ||1790sf||3-Ton Trane||Central AC & Fan Unit|
|Notes: Hot week in Phoenix, our central ac unit broke and was old enough to just replace it. We replaced with a 3-ton 18 SEER Trane central air unit. It took 2 service technicians about 6 hours to do the job.|
|Dodge City, KS||1850sf||3-Ton Carrier||Central AC, Installed|
|Notes: Hottest day of the year was over the weekend and we had to call for emergency AC repair service. 19 year old Carrier, replaced with a new 15 SEER 3-ton Carrier central air unit and coil. Took 2 guys about 5 hours to do it on a Saturday afternoon in 100 degree weather.|
*Note: User submitted prices and related content may be edited for proper grammar and punctuation.
Entries from the table are comprised of data we received in 2012 and 2013. Older price data is removed from the table every month to reflect the latest prices provided by visitors and customers.