While it may not have an immediate effect on us, the earthquake that rocked Chile in March 2010 is likely to have a long term effect on the price of cooper, which is the main component in many central air conditioners.
The only good news from this is that if you are concerned about the central air conditioner prices this year, you have nothing to worry about. Copper for units manufactured in 2010 was purchased already, and unless the HVAC Manufacturers decide to do a bit of price gouging, they should not be affected.
Billy Jobe, who is a District Manager for a division of the Ruud product line, Comfort Supply, said that their companies will get ahead of the curve by warning contractors about the copper issue and shortage before it is a shock!
We have already received some notices from our suppliers letting us know that the copper shortage is going to mean higher prices, Jobe said.
If you are in the market, or hoping to get one more year out of your home AC or heat pump system, you may want to reconsider and replace it this year. If nothing more, keep a close eye on central air conditioner prices!