Need equipment recommendation please


Old 08-18-19, 06:08 PM
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Need equipment recommendation please

My central air condenser unit seized. I need to replace it. It is 19 years old, R22..

What are my options as in:

1)get a replacement condenser suitable for r-22 or 407 c so I can keep my existing air handler and save some money for now understanding I must evacuate the system first before any new suitable condenser is installed.

2)get a replacement condenser that is 410 c, and get a replacement air handler with fan assembly and be done with it

I do have access to R-22 and 410 c.

What I had was a 4 ton unit. I have 2600 sq feet to cool across a total of two floors.

It would be nice to save some money and stay with the existing air handler because there was no leak, the duct work is all there.

3)where might I look to get equipment and any brands to suggest would be appreciated. If this #3 is a no-no in the forum, I understand.

Thanks in advance everyone for any help and suggestions. I am not in a super hurry; I just want to pull the trigger and hit the target.
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Old 08-19-19, 05:59 AM
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There is no such thing as a best brand. The unit will run as well as its selected, sized and installed. The best unit available will be junk if sized, selected or installed wrong. Most units are installed improperly.
There are a multitude of places online to buy equipment. Some will offer no warranty. Others will but you’ll be responsible for it. Meaning if you have to call a tech in then you pay for it. They may send parts under warranty.
At 19 years old, you’d be best looking at a new matched system. Then try and cobble a dry charge together with an old air handler.
Dry charge or 407C units are going away and getting harder to find.
Because your old system was 4 ton doesn’t mean you need 4 tons. How much did your existing system run on hot days? What was the humidity in the home during the summer? I’d suggest a manual J load calculation. Your system is sized now via a defunct rule of thumb of 500 square feet per ton. Which should be avoided.
Old 08-19-19, 09:46 AM
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Roughneck provided some great points.

How long are you going to stay in the home.? If less than 5 years change the compressor. This provides some challenges. If the compressor "burned out" the result is a lot of chemicals in the freon lines that are IMO not worth the risk in reusing even if they are flushed. New freon lines can be problematic.

I would stay with 22 if you can. I changed out to 410 and it just does not get the split that the 22 did. Changing freon means the lines have to be flushed anyway.

Do a google search there are lots of companies that will sell you whatever you want and deliver it. I bought a 3 ton matched set 14 seer with vfd air handler made by Ameristar for about 3 grand a few years ago. I believe the name was Ingrams. Recently for my new house I went with mini splits. Google is your friend.

I counsel you to not reuse the old air handler just because it works now does not mean that new equipment with factor spec pressures will not push it over the edge.

Every mfg makes equipment to a price point. In that price point there is little difference in the equipment. If your not aware do not choose anything without a scroll compressor. When I was looking I found some old piston models and they were inexpensive until I did some reading.

Check with your utility they might have a trade up program. You will have to find a contractor to work with but that might not be a bad thing.
Old 08-20-19, 08:23 AM
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First of all we do not offer advice relating to DIY sealed system work due to CFC regulations.

I can say that there seems to be a lot of contractors who only offer complete system replacement when an R-22 system fails.
It may be somewhat irresponsible to do so because if the rest of the system is serviceable there are R-22 units and parts available and approved drop-in refrigerants that do not require any special system preparation.
Old 08-20-19, 08:31 AM
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Equipment that uses R22 will no longer be permitted to be made per the EPA rules.
But refrigerant and individual parts will be plentiful.
For example, an air handler using R22 is no longer allowed to be manufactured. But an evaporator coil for an existing air handler is ok.
Old 08-20-19, 01:09 PM
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Also you will lose capacity with all drop in refrigerants. So your 4ton could be a 3.5 ton after it is charged. Some have more drop off than others.
Old 08-24-19, 04:42 PM
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Thank you all for your comments. I purchased a 407c type condenser because that way I could still keep everything else (air handler, etc.) and I installed it today. Everything went well. It is nice having central air back! You all are the best!

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